Steve and Claudia Irvin

Prayer Letter/Ministry Update

photo

Following a pastorate in Titusville, FL, we served with The Alliance for 26 years in Latin America in Colombia and Argentina, before accepting a call to pastor a church in Toronto, Canada for three years, and then served as interim pastor at Tabernaculo de la Fe church (our sending church) in Orlando, FL. Since January 2013 we are engaged as International Workers in Madrid, Spain in Bible Institute teaching, mentoring of leaders, and preaching. We have four adult children and six grandchildren.
_________________________________________________________________________
IRVIN UPDATE/September-October 2018

SMALL STEPS, HUGE STEPS

"For who has despised the day of small things?” (Zechariah 4:10a, NKJV)

Our ministry focus: to pour ourselves into developing leaders who live and lead like Jesus.

A child’s first steps are physically small, but they have huge significance for the parents and for the life of the child. If he or she is healthy, they are the first of millions of steps that will take them to hundreds of places during a lifetime. Most of those steps will be physically longer than those first baby steps. Few of them will be larger in significance.

That’s the way it often is in our life and ministry. Steps that appear on the surface as small, if not insignificant, often are really quite huge in the purposes of God. We sometimes don’t realize it in the moment, but later on we look back and see how huge those small steps really were.

Take for instance this summer. Our apartment complex is built around a community swimming pool and two grassy areas. When we moved here in January, our meetings with neighbors were limited to serendipitous encounters in the elevator. But when summer arrived, and the pool opened, we discovered that many of our neighbors would take folding picnic chairs and sit together chatting in the shade while the children played. How could we become a part of that informal fellowship and get to know our neighbors?

Answer: brownies! Claudia made three big batches of brownies and we went outside one evening asking people, young and old, to help us decide which was the best recipe. The kids came out of the woodwork! And the adults joined in, too. Soon afterward, we bought a couple of folding chairs that week and started to join the group most nights of the week, praying for open doors to share Christ.

Summer is coming to an end, and soon the pool will close, school will start, and the folding chairs will be stored until next summer. We recently prayed, “Lord, show us those whom you have prepared to take a next spiritual step with us.” That evening we were invited to a birthday party for one of the children. While we were chatting with different people, one man asked me if I was a pastor. We have been open with people that I am a Bible institute professor, but this was the first time anyone had ever asked me directly about my role. I shared with him that, yes, I am an evangelical pastor. He replied that in his home country he had been raised as an evangelical, but since coming to Spain several years ago, he has not been part of a church.

I was preaching that next Sunday, and I invited him to come to the service. For the first time since we moved to Spain in 2013, one of our neighbors joined with us in a church service! I preached the Word, and our new friend said afterwards that God spoke to his heart through the message. At one level, this is a small step. But to us, it is huge. We look to the Lord to work not only in our friend’s life, but also to continue opening doors for us share the gospel with many of our neighbors whom we have come to know, for whom we care, and for whom we pray. Please pray with us as seek to build on these initial small steps.

Please remember us in prayer in the coming weeks. Some important dates to keep in mind:

September 10: This date marks a small step with huge significance. Three of our Bible Institute graduates, Miguel, Marga, and Vicente, begin online theological graduate studies in FATELA , the Alliance’s graduate-level program begun several years ago in Latin America. Along with a fellow graduate, John, who begins his course work next month in ProMETA , they are being prepared to become INFORMA professors and leaders. We are thrilled to see them take this next step in their leadership development. We will be meeting with them periodically in a mentoring group to support them in their studies. The next meeting is scheduled for September 27. Please pray for them as they seek to balance well church ministry, family life, and studies.

September 7-20: Claudia and I will be in the Canary Islands again, ministering on two of the islands. Claudia will be meeting with pastors’ wives. I will be preaching in at least three churches, and teaching an INFORMA Bible Institute module. Pray with us that the Lord’s hand would be upon us for strength and blessing as we minister for two solid weeks.

October 1-14: It is back to the class room as I’ll be teaching an INFORMA module on the book of Romans in Madrid and Barcelona. In Barcelona, I’ll also be ministering in churches. The 12th to 14th Claudia will be participating in a women’s retreat bringing women together from many of our churches in Spain. Our colleague, Marilyn Westergren, is the main speaker. Ask the Lord to work through her and Claudia to minister the Word to many of the women.

We are grateful for your prayers. The Lord is at work as we speak into the lives of neighbors, of pastors and wives, and of students preparing for leadership in the church. Thank you for being a part of what God is doing in Spain, and among the nations. Your role may seem small, but in light of eternity, it is huge.

All for Jesus Until He Comes!
Steve and Claudia Irvin

LinkedIn profile
Give the Gospel a Chance
How to Actively Serve in Worldwide Missions Where You Are in Your Local Church

Information about the work in Spain:
Field Webpage
A Prayer for Spain (Includes stirring videos for use in prayer meetings)
Pray4Spain

We are supported by your faithful contributions to the Great Commission Fund (GCF) of The Christian and Missionary Alliance, 8595 Explorer Drive, Colorado Springs, CO 80920, or online. You can designate gifts to the GCF for our support by noting “GCF – Steve and Claudia Irvin support.”

Our ministry is part of the worldwide effort of The Christian and Missionary Alliance. Our “big team” includes over 750 people like us! You can sign up here to receive regular updates about our Alliance efforts around the globe. Or click here for social media updates.

Prayer Requests/Answers to Prayer

- Praise the Lord for opening doors for us to get to know our precious neighbors. Our apartment complex is made us mostly of young families, so, as grandparents, we don't fit readily into the mix. But God has given us favor, and we have gotten to know several new friends (see above). Pray for wisdom and winsomeness for us as we seek to opportunities to share Christ with these dear poeple.

- We are excited that this month that three INFORMA graduates, Miguel and Marga, and Vicente begin graduate studies with FATELA. (see above). The goal is that they become leaders and professors in INFORMA. Please pray for them in this important step in their development, even as they continue in their pastoral roles in their respective churches. The Lord willing, John will also begin studies in October in another graduate program, ProMETA. Ask the Lord to give us wisdom as we walk with these four leaders in this new stage of learning.

- Please pray for us as we travel to the Canary Islands, September 7-20, for INFORMA teaching, preaching and other ministry in the churches, and encouraging pastors and their wives. (see above). Ask the Lord for grace and wisdom as Claudia meets with the women in the context of a growing friendship. Pray for anointing upon Steve in teaching and preaching.

- Pray for God's anointing upon Steve as teaches the book of Romans in Madrid and Barcelona, October 1-12.

- Pray for Claudia as she ministers in the national church women's retreat, October 12-14.

- Pray for a new initiative being planned for 2019 that will partner INFORMA with local churches in training leaders. Pray for wisdom and clarity as we put the pieces of this new effort together.

- There are many challenges to Steve's new role as INFORMA Bible Institute director. Ask the Lord to give much grace and wisdom as he grows in this role, and works with the administrative team, professors, and students.

Praise the Lord.

Spain

flag

Updated: September 05, 2018

Children's Names
Abel
Micah
Julie
Robert
Status
Field Assignment
Country of Service
Spain

send email

visit website

Give

The ministry of Steve and Claudia depends on the financial support of people like you. Take a moment to consider how you can help today.

Find out about these individual funds.

Share

Get Involved...

Pray.

We cannot “Live the Call Together” unless prayer is central to all we do.
Pray with us »

Serve.

Is God calling you to service? We’re here to help you connect your passion with God’s purpose.
Serve with The Alliance »

Give.

Help build Christ’s Church by supporting the ministry and workers of The Alliance.
Give today »