Next month makes FIVE YEARS since we boarded an airplane as a family of 3 and a half, Amazon bound. Many of you have been on this journey since then. Others are new to the happenings. Regardless, thank you for tagging along!!
(FIVE YEARS AGO!)
The Amazon Network has been a vision given by God that has continually developed and grown into so much more than Ashley and I ever imagined. We went to a small town in the Amazon Jungle to reach indigenous with the Gospel through the means of aviation. He had other plans to make His name known. The tears, the stories, the pain, the laughter, the miracles and the people that have been woven into this part of history are truly something only He is capable of doing.
When God called us to a different role that involved us moving to the Mexican border over a year ago, we were struggling to deal with the emotions that consumed us. The jungle is our home, these are our people, this was where we were supposed to live out the rest of our lives. Or so we thought. Now 15 months on the other side of that, we still have days that we struggle with what seemed like a “loss” to us. However, in that, God has given us clear vision that our sacrifice and obedience would lead to furthering his Gospel in a way we, once again, never planned.
Some of our jungle family!
During this time, we have given vision, encouragement, and counsel from afar. Ashley has had the opportunity to make three short trips to be with our family in person to share and help in the daily needs. We recently returned from an extended trip as a family. The reality is the CHURCH is the people of Christ, those called by Him to show His Love in a hurting world. This CHURCH has been doing just that and functioning as a Body for the glory of God and the edification of His people. Our role has shifted from being the hands and feet in those first four years to being the voice of the network. We have been called to advocate for our family and share the needs as we travel back to several times a year.
The Amazon Network is growing incredibly. The people are reaching out, the lost are being found, they are being discipled, they are dying to themselves in pursuit of others. All of this brings incredible pain and suffering but it also produces an incomparable “weight of Glory” as Paul said.
Priscila is one of our The Donut Company cooks who is being discipled by Bea, a missionary with the Amazon Network.
The truth is we are at a point where we need more help. The needs are staggering, the workers are few, and the funds are at an all time low. God has been handling this ministry much in the way he fed the 5,000. He miraculously makes it happen. In order for the many ministries within the network to continue to function, we need more financial partners to join in these efforts.
We are not good at asking but we are learning that it is Biblical. When we don’t share the needs with the rest of the Body of Christ, other parts of the Body suffer as a result!
Over the next 3 months we will be setting the legal structure for the Amazon Network to be fully functioning non-profit in Colombia and Brazil. This is needed as the government has begun requesting these documents for our various ministries like Grace House and the funds sent to missionaries in the area. This is exciting as we see the Lord growing this network!
Grace House today. The Brazilian government is asking
that we proceed with legalizing the home over the next several months.
We have been making ends meet for the past several months but slowly that become more and more difficult. Now, with the need to start a legally recognized organization, that presents new financial requirements, personnel requirements and many other needs we don’t even know of yet.
What we do know, we need to double to amount of monthly support that Amazon Network receives in the next few months in order to keep from shutting down various parts of the ministry. Currently, there is approximately $3,000 per month that comes in to cover over six different ministries, support eight families and provide for over 75 people on a daily basis.
We are praying about wisdom in how to raise these funds and get the word out. We have never been interested in a “check”. We want people who are passionate about this work! We have established small businesses as a way to aide in funding the ministry. But in addition to these efforts, we want people to see and experience and desire to give to this movement.
We are trying to raise $10,000 one time funds and add $3,000 in monthly gifts in order to maintain the Amazon Network and begin the legal process that is now required.
Will you help us?
Please pray about specifically giving to this work.
You can give a one-time donation here:
Or you can set up reoccurring donations here:
(100% of your donations are tax-deductible.)
We also have Chosen Arrow Designs, a for-profit business with 100% of the profit going to fund the Amazon Network. If you would like more information on purchasing necklaces or helping us sell necklaces, please contact us. This has been a great way to fund the ministry over the last year and we’d love to see this business grow even more for the purpose of the Gospel.
One of our many designs!
You can visit our website www.theamazonnetwork.com to read the story, learn more about the many ministries the Lord is working through, and meet the many Brothers and Sisters who make up this network.
If you have questions, ideas, comments, please feel free to contact us! We appreciate the love and support we’ve received over the last 5 years and we look forward to the years ahead as we watch the Lord move and work in lives in this region!
Thank you and God bless!
Richard and Ashley and all of our Jungle Family!