Isla de Cuba 2016 GRM from John Northrup on Vimeo.
Any good trip to Cuba begins in Havana.
And for about 30 Dollars you can see the city in style, Enjoying the view from a classic American car. The old American cars here are impressive.
But let’s get out of the big city and drive a few hours down the island, where we can enjoy a nice Cuban espresso next to this sleepy plaza. Remedios, is one of my favorite Cuban towns, and they’ve recently painted the buildings in bright colors to celebrate it’s 500th anniversary. I think it’s safe to say that you would really enjoy a trip to Cuba. After all, what’s not to like, right?
The reality for Cubans is a bit different.
The economy is a challenge, to say the least, and they have to hustle—365 / 24 / 7. There’s a shortage of everything; finding basic food like eggs can be a big problem. And that goes for soap, toothpaste, chicken, beans, rice, coffee, you name it. Sure, all these items are available at the hard currency stores, but only a Havana Taxi driver can afford those prices. Most Cubans try to make ends meet on about 20 Dollars a month. They have a saying here, maybe you’ve heard it before: “No es facil”—It’s not easy.
I have visited the Buenas Nuevas, or Good News, churches here almost every year for 30 years. The church in Sancti Spiritus is the first one that my parents started back in 1953.
Today our goal is to help and encourage these Believers in Cuba.
They put up with a lot more than just economic pressures—while the Cuban government hasn’t overtly persecuted the church since the 1990’s, it does try to keep churches on a short leash.
But the Buenas Nuevas churches keep growing and we now count 140 congregations throughout Cuba—those are registered churches, with pastors. There are more than 300 house churches that don’t have their own building.
Cuba has been in the news constantly. There’s a lot happening between the U.S. and Cuba, but no one really knows how this will all turn out. The pressures on the Cuban people have created a real spiritual crisis and people are responding to the Gospel.
God is moving in Cuba, and the church is multiplying!
Cubans are positive about the future, but not positive enough to stay and wait for it. Many thousands are trying, right now, to reach a better life in the U.S. This is a critical moment in history for that nation.
Please pray for Cuba and for the Cuban people.
Ask God to use all of this for his glory—And for Christ to be lifted up as the only hope for the people of Cuba.
And pray for our brothers and sisters there who are faithfully sharing this one true hope for Cuba and the world. Ask the Father to encourage their hearts with the promise that, “The gates of hell will not prevail against the church of Jesus Christ, the son of the living God”.
Thank you for all you do to sustain this Kingdom connection through Gospel Relief Missions to our growing family in Cuba and Mexico.