Guatemala (MNN) — The average person doesn’t replace their car every two years. But the average vehicle used by Paradise Bound Ministries in Guatemala only lasts two to three years because of bad road conditions. Because of the immense growth Paradise Bound has seen in Guatemala, they have an extensive network of lay pastors to serve. No longer is traveling by road sufficient or efficient.
Since April, the staff of Paradise Bound has been asking for your prayers regarding an aviation program. Dan Smith of Paradise Bound shares some exciting updates with us.
“God has led us to a specific aircraft,” he says. A man from Minnesota is selling this aircraft to Paradise Bound.
The ministry knows that it’s a little more complicated than buying a plane. It’s a transition to a whole new way of operating.
Smith says, “The first step for us was stepping out in faith. God called us to it, and so we step out in faith, and we know that. It’s been confirmed through prayer, it’s been confirmed through many, many doors that have been opening for us.”
Not only is the cost of replacing and repairing vehicles becoming a bigger problem, the accessibility to villages leaves something to be desired. Smith explains that during certain times of the year, they cannot reach some villages at all.
Right now, if all goes well, Paradise Bound can visit three villages in three days and share the Gospel with them. That’s the best-case scenario.
A plane would change that. Smith says, “If we were to fly to those same three villages, we could do all three villages in the same day going from one village to another village, to another village, and still be back home in time for supper.
“And we will have presented the Gospel to hundreds more people than what we would have over the course of three days.”
Smith says that this will end up costing half the amount of money with all factors considered. “So you begin to see real quickly that there is an efficiency factor that far outweighs the cost factors of the aircraft in the time savings alone.”
The initial cost to get the plane into operation for Paradise Bound is $250,000. This includes the cost of the plane, the first years of flying, and more.
This is a large number for such a small ministry. Smith says they have a current matching grant for $50,000. That will bring their raised funds to $100,000 if donors match that amount.
The gifting will determine how soon Paradise Bound can raise the rest of the funds. Smith says, “I know even now that there are listeners today that could write a check for $250,000, and it would not hurt them financially. If anything, it would actually bring gifts into their lives as you cannot out-give God. But there are also those who are listening today that couldn’t even do $2.50 without hurting them right now.”
Smith says that traditionally, their ministry has been sustained financially through small gifts. He wants potential supporters to know that this is an incredible opportunity for anyone to partner with a ministry that will share the love of Christ with people who have never heard about Him before. He also assures us that they are more than ready if a generous donor would cover all the costs.
They are leaving it up to God and how He moves your hearts.
If you’d like to contribute to this cause financially, click here. Pray that Paradise Bound would be successful in getting this program off the ground and that they would be able to minister to many more souls.
Also, if you’re in the Holland, Michigan area, check out information here about an Open House on November 6, 2014 where you can learn more about this aviation project.