In this episode, I play an interview of a friend, Nate Ariel, who left Antioch Community Church with his family in October 2011, to serve as missionaries on the island of Bocachica, off the coast of Cartagena, Colombia. The area where we were ministering has 9,000 people who live without running water and have to get “sweet water” (fresh) by boat from the mainland. Antioch Community Church sent down a team of 14 to help dig latrines, pour concrete floors, and present a marriage and family conference.
I also talk about ways we can support missionaries, taking my encouragement and instruction from 3 John 5-8.
- With practical help. From a prison cell in his last months, Paul asked for three things from his son in the faith, Timothy. He asked for his cloak. Paul was cold. He asked for his parchments and books. Paul wanted to read, especially the Word of God. He asked for Timothy to come to him. Paul was lonely! We support missionaries when we write to them or skype with them. We support them when we send them supplies. We support them the best, perhaps, when we go and visit with them to encourage them and help them in the work.
- With financial support. We support a family of nine we sent to Bocachica, Colombia. Let me share one of their recent prayer requests about living on an island where there is a daily struggle to have clean drinking water. We have dug a second well. We hit sweet water, however, it only gives 20 gallons (per day)…for a family of 9 it’s nowhere near enough. The problem is we don’t at this time think we should put more money into this well. It may be that we need to look for another owner who will let us use their land to put another well on. However in the area we need it…the owner is hungry for money. So without buying land, which we can’t do at this time, we are back to square one.
- Hudson Taylor said, “God’s work done in God’s way will never lack God’s supply.” The missionary’s job is to make sure he is doing God’s work in God’s way. But where does “God’s supply” come from? Most often, it comes from God’s people. We must make sure that we are doing our part to supply the needs of the missionaries we support. With prayer, practical help, and finances.
- If you would like to support the Nate and Tara Ariel family and their mission to the island of Bocachica, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org!
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Nate Ariel has been married to Tara since August of 1998. They have 7 children, whose ages range from 13 to 2 1/2. Nate and his family are living and working as missionaries in Bocachica, Colombia. Their primary focus is community development and personal discipleship in an impoverished village of about 9,000 people. Before moving to South America, Nate and his family resided in Burlington, NC, where he owned a masonry company doing residential and commercial projects, and also owned a restaurant called Ariel’s Diner. He has been a part of Antioch Community Church for about 12 years and served as deacon as well as shepherd leader.