What We Do

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We are non-denominational missionaries working with pastors, churches, schools, and the local hospital in Chiquimula, Guatemala. We host training seminars for pastors, leaders, and youth from rural areas and we help supply the congregations with Biblical materials to minister to their communities. We are currently building a Ministry Center to host the events. We visit several public schools to share a Biblical story and play with the kids. We also pray in the local hospital and give out toys, toiletries, and Biblical materials. Ways to Be a Part of this Ministry: Come - We need pastors and leaders to come and teach these pastors and leaders here in Guatemala. Or you could bring a group to work in the churches or schools with construction or evangelism. Financially Support - If you would like to support this ministry, please visit our website at www.eyeswideopenministries.com to donate online or send your donation to: Killen UMC Mission P.O.Box 249 Killen, Alabama 35645 Make your checks payable to Killen UMC Missions and designate the check to Daniel McIntyre All donations are tax-deductible. Pray - Please pray we will follow God's leading in all we do.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Almost done!

Praise God, the 2016/2017 school year is almost in the books. Although I'm sure my kids could have learned more, they have learned a lot. Levi will pass the 4th grade, and MK will pass 3rd. The Lord is good! Uriah has already started some school, but he will begin formal Kindergarten in August. Time has definitely flown by!
To be honest, I never wanted to homeschool. It wasn't in my plans for sure. I was a super confident secondary math teacher but was consumed by the fear of teaching my own kids. I guess my main reason is that I'm not a very creative and fun elementary teacher (and my History knowledge is embarrassing). The other is that I truly believe that children learn from other children. Cooperational learning is a BIG topic in the education world. But God is showing me that when He calls us to do something, He will provide, lead us, and even use our weaknesses. God is also opening my eyes to how vast His understanding is! Although public school is awesome, so is homeschool! Both have their great advantages. 
Above all, God continues to remind me of how He is the greatest Teacher. When I was overwhelmed at the thought of raising our children in another country, God led me to Isaiah 54:13, 17b "All your children will be taught by the LORD, and great will be their peace...this is the heritage of the servants of the LORD." I can't stop thinking about this verse today and how true it is. 
Another new adventure this spring semester was that the kids wanted to go to school here in El Morral, where they only speak and teach in Spanish. They chose to go in the morning and do homeschool in the afternoon. I actually thought it would last two weeks, but they have done great! Another surprise from God. It has helped our kids with their Spanish, and they have made several friends. 
God is faithful and does far more than we can ask or imagine (Ephesians 3:20). I just wanted to praise Him for that today. 

Friday, December 23, 2016

Where are the Faithful?

Daniel and I, before we went to Guatemala, went on a trip to the beach for our anniversary. I was preganant with Levi, so this was about ten years ago.
On the way down, Daniel and I got to talking about how alone we felt. We had just heard some terrible news on the radio about a bad guy doing bad things, and I guess we just felt discouraged. We talked for a while about feeling like we were in a losing battle in this world and how it seemed like it keeps getting worse. 
When we arrived at our hotel, we soon realized that the owners of the hotel were Christians. Verses and crosses were hanging on the walls of our room, worship music was playing in the lobby, and then we actually met the owner. He shared with us how he and his wife felt called to share God's love and truth with everyone that stayed in the hotel. 
When does that ever happen? We had never stayed in a hotel like that before. We never have since. We know that God had set that weekend up to show us that we are not alone. We are not the only Christians in the world, not even close. We are definitely on the winning team, and God knows what He is doing. 
I thought about that weekend this morning as I read Psalm 12:1. David says, "Help, LORD, for no one is faithful anymore; those who are loyal have vanished from the human race." 
David must have been feeling like Daniel and me were that day on the way to the beach. Discouragement is a tool that the enemy uses to make us feel defeated. He used it with David, and he'll use it until God shuts him up forever. 
Hear Jesus's words this morning from John 16:33 "...in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Our Bodyguards

Over the past few months, gangs from El Salvador have been leaving their country in order to expand their "territory" and start other gangs in other countries. Guatemala has been fighting against this and arresting many of these gang members. Many of them have been killed as well. It's crazy living in a place where there is still this "wild west" mentality on handling crime and "bad guys."

But some of these gang members were coming up to El Morral village, where we are living, in the middle of the night to steal motorcycles and whatever else they could grab. Our friends here were very upset and nervous about all this. One night, a motorcycle was stolen from the front porch of a house. The houses here are built differently from the States. The door to go into the bedroom is on the front porch. So for someone to be bold enough to steal something from your porch was basically going into your house while you are there sleeping and stealing your stuff. So....our friends were telling us to be very careful and what to do or not to do. One of them started praying and fasting about all this and asking God to protect the families and the houses from the gangs and thieves.

One night, his wife had a dream. In the dream, she heard something outside on her porch while she was alone in the house. She quietly went outside to see what or who it was. Turning the corner on her porch, she found herself right in front of a huge, very tall man. His clothes were a sky blue color. She was so afraid and didn't know what to do. He said, "Don't be afraid. I am sent here to protect your house from any evil. And not only your house, but every house where God's people live."

She woke up and didn't feel upset or worried anymore. And her husband said that this was God answering his prayers and pleads to protect them from evil.

Isn't God awesome?! And He most definitely is our Comforter, Protector, and Peace. Amen!

Friday, September 30, 2016

A Thyroid Problem

I have a little problem with my thyroid (a butterfly shaped gland in the neck that puts out hormones). It's called Hashimoto's disease, which is an auto-immune disease, where my immune system attacks my thyroid. I was diagnosed with the disease 12 years ago, and I've been taking thyroid hormone replacements ever since. The symptoms I have are very sporadic and weird.  Sometimes I feel very fatigued and short of breath, and there are times where I can't sleep and feel anxious. I often break out in hives, and my eyes and ears swell up like Will Smith's on the movie Hitch. I don't handle stress very well most of the time, and I struggle with feelings of depression from time to time.... The list keeps going. I have pretty much experienced all of the "normal" Hashimoto's symptoms.
One morning, feeling extremely fatigued and stressed, I was standing in our kitchen holding a piece of bread. I looked at the bread, and I felt God say, "Bread makes you feel worse." So for six months, I haven't eaten anything with wheat, and now I'm trying to take all grains out of my diet... except corn of course, because who could live without corn in Guatemala?? I have felt a lot better ever since! 
I would also like to mention that my grandmother, Nanette McBay, has it too, and this month our 8 year old daughter, Mary Kathleen, was diagnosed with it, which of course broke our hearts. Obviously, this little problem is hereditary.
There is very little I like less than talking about sickness. We believe in a very real and powerful God, and over these years of struggling with this disease, He has spoken to my heart numerous times and told me that His Grace is enough. And it's so true. He has been faithful to give strength and peace every single day. As we patiently wait and take our daily medicine, we ask God for a healthy thyroid. We believe that one day, He will give us this desire, but we continue to worship Him no matter what.
I'm sharing all of this for a few reasons:
1. To testify to the faithfulness and realness of God. Without His strength and grace, I would be a huge, hot, whiny, swelled-up, depressed, mess. (Even when We are a hot mess though, He still loves us.)
2. To speak the Truth that God is good and full of love for us no matter our circumstances. He deserves our worship in good times and tough times.
3. To, of course, ask for your prayers. Dealing with sickness as an adult is one thing... having to see your 8 year old deal with sickness is another. Wow! Does it hurt. It's difficult to give my daughter a pill every morning knowing that something's wrong. Going "grain-free" as an adult is understandable, but we are struggling with the pros/cons of this diet with our daughter. No Cupcakes!!! Come on! We have more tests to do and more doctors to talk to, so we are just beginning this journey. Again... we are blessed!! There are much worse senarios we won't even start to think about, but we humbly ask for your prayers. 

Thank you to those who have helped us these past few weeks! My cousin, Audri Ragasa, who is a nurse practitioner and has all kinds of doctor-connections, has been a very calming and helpful voice. Dr. Wayne Melvin in Florence, AL is awesome too!! 
God provides everything we need. 
I Need You More, Kim Walker-Smith
These are kind of embarrassing! Haha! I get black eyes, fat lips, and hives, along with other non-visible symptoms. MK has only had lots of fatigue. 

Sunday, August 21, 2016

A day dream...

One morning, about a year before we came to Guatemala, I was sitting at the kitchen table in Greenhill studying for a Sunday school lesson I would teach.  Daniel was working at the PD, I was pregnant with Mary Kathleen, and Levi was asleep upstairs. We were in the process of fully committing to coming to serve in Guatemala.
All of a sudden, I saw a big field full of people sitting and listening to Jesus teach. My mom, dad, and grandmother were in the crowd sitting and listening. Jesus came to me and asked me to help Him serve, so I went around serving really quickly and then I went and sat down with my parents and grandmother. Jesus came up to me again and asked me to help serve, so I got up and helped as fast as I could and then went back to sit with my family. This happened one more time, and then Jesus finished teaching and everyone in the crowd got up to go back to their homes. I just stood there crying and watching my parents and grandmother leave when Jesus whispered in my ear that it was time to go.
When I "woke up", I was in the shower getting ready for church. 
I felt God let me see this because He knew that I was fighting between leaving my family and coming to Guatemala. Although it still was the hardest decision of my life, I often think of what I saw in the vision and remember that it was God who called us to serve here. 
I feel also God wanted me to see that we all have a calling. My family is where they are suppose to be, ministering where they are to minister.  There were so many people listening to Jesus, and they left to go back to their homes and tell others. We all have a calling and a purpose. 

Thursday, August 18, 2016

God still speaks to His people

I've shared these stories with some people before, but I would like to take the next few posts to write down and testify to how God has spoken to us in specific ways at one time or another in our lives. Please be sure to share your experiences if you feel led, because God speaks to his people all the time and it's important to tell others about it to encourage them... It's not bragging. It does not make us religious freaks. We are just telling the truth and testifying to God's "realness". 

We are a very distracted generation... It's true. There are not many people that can actually say they haven't walked into a wall, or something similar, because they were looking down at their phone. So, I want to point out that most every time we have heard God speak specifically, we have been in a fairly quiet place or intentionally seeking God... And the phone was put away. 

On a side note, God speaks to us every day. The Holy Bible is God (John 1:1). Although I am sharing just a few of the specific examples of where God spoke to us personally, God is very alive and active in His Word (Hebrews 4:12). Read It.

Ok, the first experience I would like to share is short since I've already talked too much.

I was at a retreat with my church, Casa Del Alfarero (Potter's House), the very first year we came to Guatemala (October 2009). Since I didn't know much Spanish, honestly I didn't expect to get too much out of it. Wow was I wrong. God speaks our language. I guess I had forgotten that. 
The very first few minutes of the retreat, Ms. Anita Marroquin hung a banner with Isaiah 54:11,12 on it and said, "Someone needs to hear this today." Of course I couldn't read it on the banner, so I got my Bible and read it and God said, "These verses are for you today." As I read the words, I felt God's love towards me in such an amazing way that I started ugly crying before the retreat had even begun. The verses on the banner spoke to a specific situation in my personal life, and although I was comforted in an unexplainable way, I was also greatly concerned for my kids' well-being at the time. The truth is, I wanted to go back to Alabama. God had given me promises just a couple moments before that He would take care of me, but I argued that He couldn't take care of my kids... So God says, "Keep reading." Isaiah 54:13 says, “All your children will be taught by the Lord, and great will be their peace.”  Why do we argue with God?
Later on in the retreat, we talked about the prodical son. The leaders put rings on our fingers like the dad did in the story, and since I didn't understand hardly anything that my leader, Dinora Leytan, said at the time... as she slid the ring on my finger, God took that moment to say, "I will never leave you." I believed Him too. I've since had a gold ring made with the words "God is with me" on it, and I never take it off as a reminder that God will never leave me. 
God spoke a whole lot more in that retreat too! During those three days, I began to let God change my heart towards our home in Guatemala. Shamefully, I fought a lot more after that, but God is faithful, loving, and very merciful. He keeps working on us. 

Monday, August 15, 2016

Short Update - Yes!

Welp...this is going to be short. We are praying for y'all and love keeping up with some of y'all through facebook and email! We are praying for our country as well! May God's kingdom come and His will be done during the elections! And be sure to shine God's light and love as you live out each day for the world to see and glorify God in heaven! Good stuff!
We had two pastor seminars within a month period at the new ministry facility here in El Morral! We have been living in our new house for two weeks! It is so awesome! It is cooler here and away from the city and noise! We are so thankful and happy...love being here with the folks and seeing their reactions to having North Americans living here. And I ain't shy...I go around talking and getting to know them. Loving it! The kids love the house! Said it was the best house ever! Praise God! And the seminars were inspiring! Some of the pastors shared about how they were at that point of feeling abandoned, alone, and exhausted, but now they were leaving feeling inspired, encouraged, and ready to go at it again! That's what we pray and look for! God is good! Thank all of y'all for giving and praying so that they can be encouraged and grow in the knowledge of God! 
We have almost finished the second dorm and bathroom! Can you believe it!? We are getting to that point of laying the floor tile and installing the toilets and windows. The floor will cost $1,500 to finish, and the bathroom and windows will cost another $1,500. Please be praying for the ministry so we can get this next phase finished and start using the dorm and bathroom during the seminars. Right now we are teaching, sleeping, and eating in the one finished dorm room...but it's still so nice! The next process will be getting the roof for the auditorium put on. That will be $3,700. We don't have this but really need help getting these next phases finished so we can keep going with the smaller little by little costs in getting the walls and floors done for the auditorium. Be praying with us and watch what God will do! He is so faithful and good! And we pray blessings for all y'all that have helped and will continue to help the ministry and these pastors and their communities. 
Well...I'm older...and Brandi is getting older this coming Wednesday and then Mary Kathleen will be older this coming Sunday...dadgum! Going by fast! Thank y'all for your birthday wishes! We had a great time this past week with Brandi's parents here, Keith and Kathy. The kids loved seeing their Paw Paw and Maw Maw! And we loved sitting and talking and spending time with them! God is good and sure blesses us with the little things in life! We are so grateful! 

Well...that's all for now! Love y'all and are so thankful to have y'all as a part of our lives and as co-laborers in the ministry here in Chiquimula! God bless!!

McIntyre Family