Travelogue: Dominican Republic January 2014

By Pastor Daryl Largis

This past week, I had the opportunity to visit the Dominican Republic along with a medical team sponsored by The Chapel working in and through SCORE International, our on-the-ground partner there.  Even though I have been stateside for a few days, the taste of the red beans and rice as well as the rich Dominican coffee are still fresh in my mind.

While I was there I had the privilege to spend some time with SCORE’s church planting leaders and pastors.  God is moving, to say the least, in and through His Church in that place which was excellent to see and touch! My time with them was predominantly focused upon hearing from them as it relates to what God is doing in their midst. We discussed the questions of what does God want for the Dominican Republic specifically in the places where the churches they lead are located, and what would it look like if God did what He wanted in those places and eventually in the nation. Great questions to stir strategic thinking related to geography, to mobilizing God’s people, and to intentionally working towards gospel saturation through evangelization. My hope is that these conversations will lead to further engagements down the road so that the Church of the Dominican Republic can be fully mobilized into every barrio, batey, village, and city to ensure that every Dominican man, woman, and child, regardless of social status, has repeated opportunities to hear, see, and experience the life-transforming message of the gospel. Please be in prayer with me to this eventual reality.

Another interesting aspect of this trip was to see all of the medical personnel in action. There were people from all over Western New York on this trip as well as some from the mid-west, ranging from students in the medical field to seasoned surgeons, in addition to others to help and support wherever needed. It was awesome to hear the stories of how these people came to serve on this trip. Definitely a God thing and something only He could do. These folks were excited to have a chance to share their God-given skills, talents, and abilities to bless others, and thrilled to have opportunities to share their faith. As a result, their understanding of who Christ is and the goodness that comes from knowing Him deepened and blessed them. I saw and heard this from just a couple of interactions with the team, knowing that the scope of what God is doing is much, much grander and broader than what I was privileged to see and hear.

So, in closing let me challenge the readers of this blog. Do you wish to deepen your understanding of who Christ is and the goodness of walking with Him in a close relationship?  Simply stated, the best way for you to do this is to share your faith. Share what God has done in your life. This means knowing your story of redemption in the context of God’s mission to redeem creation back to Himself in Christ, and what your faith has done lately. How is God working in your life now?  People need to know what God has done and is doing now in your life. God is always at work!  Share your faith in word and in deed for when we do, we will grow in our understanding of Christ.  The Apostle Paul under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit penned these words, which I heard preached, later re-read, and then reflected upon while in the Dominican Republic; “I pray that you may be active in sharing your faith, so that you will have a full understanding of every good thing we have in Christ” (Philemon 1:6, NIV).  That is my prayer for each person that reads this blog.