Open doors

When God closes one door, He opens another! 

You may have heard this phrase before. In Medellín, Colombia, the Hands with Hope Foundation has repeatedly seen this happen as we pray, seek God’s will, and trust Him to lead and guide in fulfilling the goals of this ministry. One particular verse that has been of great encouragement recently for this ministry comes from Proverbs 16:3: “Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and your plans will succeed.”  I like this version in Spanish, which says: “Pon en manos del Señor todas tus obras, y tus proyectos se cumplirán.” (NVI)

Here are some of the successful plans that God is bringing about for Hands with Hope:

IMG_3884NEW SHOEMAKER — The couple that had previously helped Hands with Hope ‘get into the art of making shoes’ recently had to leave this ministry – yet, God brought another shoemaker, Covenant Pastor Diego Cuervo, to help out.  Here is a brief account of his amazing story and testimony.

I was born into a dysfunctional family as the oldest boy. I grew up strongly influenced by the world around me, which led me into drugs, gang activity, thievery, and other vices. My life was headed in a bad direction. Yet, at the age of 17, I became a Christian. This greatly helped me to get my life straightened out for long periods at a time. But, I never allowed Jesus to totally take control of my life. I maintained many contacts from my youth that caused me to fall back into past bad habits. A few years later I married my wife, Mayerly, and our marriage has given us a beautiful daughter.

My two brothers had also gotten involved in drugs, robbery and gang activity. In 2005 a rival gang was pursuing one of my brothers. They were looking to settle a score with him over a drug deal that had gone bad. They arrived at our house, where my brother was staying, and I heard them come in and threaten my brother with his life. I ran into the room to intervene and fight for my brother. They had him pinned on the ground with a gun to his head. As I jumped to help my brother the gun went off. The others ran out of the house. My brother was saved. But the bullet had lodged in my spine, paralyzing me from the waist down!

Needless to say, at that moment my life became a struggle and fight to stay alive. I have recovered from this incident but I am living my life now in a wheelchair. God restored my life and soul as the accident brought me once again to put my life and faith in God’s hands. He transformed my life into one that I now live for his honor and glory. He also restored my relationship with my wife and our daughter.

By God’s presence and strength I have lived and grown in every aspect of my life these past nine years. Two years ago I heard God call me into the pastoral ministry and today I am pastoring the Comunidad Remanso de Paz Covenant Church, which was planted by my mother before she passed away.

A couple of months ago the Hands With Hope Foundation asked me to work with them in their shoe making project. Earlier in my life I had learned to make shoes and have used this skill as a way to earn a living. I am now teaching single mothers and women at risk to make shoes with their hands and with a few basic machines.Aprendiendo.zapatos

This is a great blessing for me to help these women in this small way. It is quite a long path that I am on in my life, but, now, I am being used by God with the Hands With Hope Foundation – one man amongst many women who are looking to improve their quality of life through the equipping ministry and craft/work ministry.

THE LOCATION? — Hands with Hope continues to seek God’s will as to where and when to purchase their location ministry site. There have been many closed doors in this selection process, but there are still more opened doors to go through. Our hope and prayer is that the ‘place’ God has for the Hope and Opportunities Center will be found soon

FOUND HER! — God answered our prayers for a person who could be our US contact person/promoter for Hands with Hope. In the upcoming months, through our website –new website address: — and other communication there will be more information as to how you can become more involved in this ministry.

Nuevas.creacionesBIG HIT! The lovely mola crafts made by the women here in Medellín continue to be a ‘hit’ – here in Colombia as well as in the US!  A big thanks for our co-worker and missionary, Cathy Campobello, who has been promoting these handcrafted items as she is on a 3-month home assignment in the US.

Manos.con Diego.MayerlyLOSE ONE, GAIN ANOTHER — One Colombian team member needed to leave the board for personal reasons – yet, God brought a professional Colombian woman who can help lead and move us into new and better administrative areas of marketing and organization.

ALWAYS REACHING OUT – We continue to invite new women to be involved in the foundation and learn new skills. These new women are being blessed by God and by being a part of this ministry family. As they share their blessings with their own families and friends, they become more encouraged and motivated to move forward in their lives. That is a positive, healthy cycle to be participating in




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