Mexico Tour in Review

The Lord blessed the 2018 Mexico Tour in many ways. In ten days, we were given 
many opportunities to share the gospel, cast a Biblical vision for family, encourage 
family relationships, and challenge individuals and families to build every aspect of 
their lives on the Solid Rock of God's Word.  
 Part of the family enjoyed a relaxing hike wedged in between one of the cracks of our busy schedule.
Mexico's beautiful sunrises and sunsets never cease to amaze us.
Allison enjoyed reconnecting with this friend she first met in Mexico a few years ago. 
Two older siblings planned a fun lunch date with some of their younger siblings!
Josh and Huds enjoyed a man-to-man conference featuring coffee,
chess, and conversation.
You can watch this side-splitting rendition of "Dueling Banjos" on YouTube.
The Mexico countryside is scenic and varied.
Peter Swatsky and his family traveled with us while Peter worked as our capable translator. 
Because we've had no babies in our family for a while, we especially enjoyed laughing and 
playing with Kezzia (pictured above) and her sister Isabella.
We were overwhelmed by the hospitality of the German Mennonites. Their cuisine is our favorite!
Our Mexico Tour would not have been complete without a bus crisis. The day before we left Mexico, we took a "shortcut" to avoid the traffic backed up behind a military check-point. Unfortunately, the incline was trickier to negotiate than anticipated. After our interpreter placed rocks under the tires, we crested the hill with minimal bus damage.
Reentering the United States was more difficult than crossing into Mexico. After four hours at the border, during which time none of us could be with Dad in the bus, we finally crossed to "the land
of the free and the home of the brave."
Some of the greatest ministry opportunities occurred, not in the concerts, but in fellowship with fathers, mothers, siblings, and families in homes, gyms, churches, and restaurants. We were 
thankful for the hunger for discipleship that we felt in Mexico.

Whether through the busyness of life, the barrage of the technology age, or the disintegration of Biblical family roles, the enemies of strong families will never cease their onslaught.

Nonetheless, God's promises and precepts still hold true for families today. In this generation we must return God's Word, not cultural trends and philosophies, as the foundation for building families. By God's grace, when we let Him build our homes, we can once again have stronger churches and stronger nations.

"Blessed is every one that feareth the LORD; that walketh in his ways. For thou shalt eat the labour of thine hands: happy shalt thou be, and it shall be well with thee. Thy wife shall be as a fruitful vine by the sides of thine house: thy children like olive plants round about thy table. Behold, that thus shall the man be blessed that feareth the LORD. The LORD shall bless thee out of Zion: and thou shalt see the good of Jerusalem all the days of thy life. Yea, thou shalt see thy children's children, and peace upon Israel." --Psalm 128


Updated California Dates

The Bontrager Family Singers are thrilled about visiting California in a few days! Please note that we will ONLY be singing two songs in the morning and two in the evening at Lancaster Baptist Church. If you would like to hear a full concert, we strongly encourage you to come to one of our other dates in California.

Below is our California schedule with a couple recent changes.

March California Dates

25...Lancaster Baptist Church, Lancaster, CA, 8:30am, 11am, 5pm (only singing two songs in the morning and two in the evening)
27...Bakersfield Family Church, Bakersfield, CA, 7pm
28...Shepard of the Hills Church, Tehachapi, CA, 7pm
29...Grace Community Church, Madera, CA, 6:30pm
31...Faith Community Bible Church, Atwater, CA, 6pm

April California Dates

1. First Baptist, Yuba City, CA, 9:45am
1. Pioneer Baptist Church, Citrus Heights, CA, 5:30pm
4. Park Victoria Baptist Church, Milpitas, CA, 7pm
5. Gerber Bible Fellowship, Gerber, CA, 7pm


Snapshots From Mexico

We have been blessed to have many families attend our concerts in Mexico.
The new and updated "Sibling Cooperation" is still a crowd favorite.  
Some of the most beautiful sunsets ever can be seen in this lovely wide open country.
Here's another favorite sunset.  
Fresh produce, delicious Mennonite cheese & bologna, Mexican peanuts, 
and fresh tortillas make a delicious meal. 
La Sierra is our favorite Mexican/Mennonite restaurant. Here is our family-favorite fajitas with shrimp, beef, and chicken. Some tasty area specialties include fresh slices of avocado, tomato, cucumbers, and always Ranch dressing.  

"And they that know thy name will put their trust in thee: for thou, Lord, hast not forsaken them that seek thee." -- Psalm 9:10  


Special Reunion Concert This Sunday Evening!

The entire Bontrager clan will be with us this Sunday evening, March 4, 6pm, at Calvary Baptist, in New Braunfels, Texas! John and Chelsy, Mitchell and Bryn, and Carson and Carolina will be joining the Bontrager Family Singers for a few songs in this special reunion concert. We would love to see any of our central Texas friends!

For those of you living too far away, you can join us through a livestream tomorrow night! Calvary Baptist livestreams their services, and we'd love to have you follow along via their channel tomorrow night @ 6pm central time. Visit this link to watch!

And then, just for fun, if you'd like to check it out, you can watch last years' concert @ Calvary Baptist, here! All four of the "in-loves" were in attendance that night as well, but that was before anyone was engaged and we hadn't announced the relationships online yet. It is pretty fun to think of how much can change in just one year!


Why Your Family Needs the Bible Bee

Our 2016 NBB Contestants
Registration for the National Bible Bee Summer Program opens today! Join thousands of families whose lives have been transformed by the power of God's Word. Sign up before March 15 in order to receive a 20% discount off registration.

First, you may ask, "Why should I do the Bible Bee?"

1. The Bible Bee is Life-changing

For myself and my younger siblings, the Bible Bee has been simply revolutionary.

First, the Bible Bee taught us to love and prioritize God's Word. The Bible Bee taught us that God's eternal Word is the most valuable thing we can spend time on.

According to the Barna Group, around 75% of Christian young people leave the faith after high school or college. If our children don't know and love God's Word, they will likely become another statistic.

Second, the Bible Bee built valuable discipline into our lives. For myself and my siblings, the Bible Bee taught us to deny our flesh. We learned to focus on what important rather than simply doing what felt good at the moment.

Last, the Word of God that we studied and memorized through the Bible Bee prepared us for life. As Christ admonished, those who hear and do His words are like the wise man built upon a rock (Luke 6, Matthew 5). The Word of God we learned through the Bible helped us to grow in the character of Christ and to stand firm in our convictions.

2. The Bible Bee is Do-able 

Through a small investment of time and money, your family can potentially reap massive spiritual dividends. Beginning June 10, the eight-week summer study only takes about 20 minutes each day to complete. Could you fit 20 minutes into your family's daily schedule?

Here's a description of the Summer Study from bible bee.org:

Join thousands of young people who are learning how to unlock the Scriptures and memorize God’s Word! The 8-week Summer Study prepares and encourages participants to memorize and study Scripture, whether they are studying on their own or taking part within a church or other hosted group. Using the Discovery Journal, Memory Passage Cards and other resources, participants learn how to study the Scriptures for themselves in as little as 20 minutes a day with the option of a deeper study.

Using the Discovery Journal resource, the Summer Study takes the participants on a journey through the Scriptures asking questions designed to help the participants learn tools to discover the Bible for themselves. At the conclusion of the Summer Study, participants may take the National Bible Bee Qualifying Test. This test allows the participant to be ranked nationally among other Summer Study participants. If the participant scores within the top 120 of their age division and have met all the other requirements, they will be invited to be a contestant at the National Bible Bee Competition (NBBC).

3. The Bible Bee is Family-Friendly 

Though the competition is designed for ages 7-18, the entire family can still learn the Word of God together. The Summer Study might be a perfect thing to include in your family devotions. As you study and memorize God's Word together, you just might find your family bonding together in a deeper way.

Sign up Today!

In an age of widespread deception, our children need to know and love the truth of God's Word, so that they can stand strong in their generation and so they can pass on the faith to the next. The Bible Bee is a helpful tool that can assist in the important work of family discipleship.

You may never have tried the Bible Bee before. But you will never know how life-changing it could be until you've tried it. You may have had plausible excuses, but they're gone after this explanation.

Or maybe you've tried the Bible Bee, but have become overwhelmed by the study. You may have become more focused on the competition than on the Word of God. Could it be you need to reconnect with why you're doing the Bible Bee?

If you're struggling to find time for the Bible Bee, you might consider incorporating 20-30 minutes of study into your family devotions. You could even substitute the study for a school subject.

If you'll do the Bible Bee to teach your children to love God's Word, you may find that it's more rewarding than you could have imagined.

Can you spare 20 minutes a day for the summer?

If your answer if yes, go to bible.org to claim your early registration discount today!

Today, registration is only $20 per contestant. By March 15, it will be $25. Don't miss out on this incredible opportunity to teach your children God's Word!