Our God is Without Borders

 

The teams have been experiencing a lot in Mexico and Honduras! Whether speaking words of truth into the lives of others or having locals pray over them in times of need, the teams are learning just how large the body of Christ is, and how borders don’t limit our God! Read day by day accounts from the students and leaders below, as they share the big and the small moments where God has been making His presence known. We are so thankful for all your prayers!

Mexico

Day 4

This afternoon, we went back to the Immigrant House. We performed our skit, which represented the refugees being rejected by men but accepted by God. Then Michaela gave the message she prepared, telling the men that Jesus had been an immigrant like them, and that just as this House is their safe house, so Jesus is a safe house, too. After the message, a girl named Valeria told Lisa that as Michaela was talking, she felt the presence of God like never before. When she was younger, her boyfriend, who was a godly man, died in a freak accident, and Valeria decided she couldn’t trust a God who would let that happen. This was the first time since that accident that she felt God, and hearing God explained as an immigrant and a refugee really struck her in a powerful way. She asked Lisa a lot of questions, and it’s clear that she’s hungry for more. It was really cool to see God use Michaela’s words to so powerfully impact Valeria. He is faithful!

After that some of us played soccer or basketball, Gabe brought his guitar and sang songs, and others of us just talked with the people. Even through these simple interactions, we could see God at work. The men really seemed to appreciate us, and God used our abilities and our time at the Immigrant House to show them His love.

Day 5

Today we were going repelling. This “fun” day actually stretched us in ways that we didn’t necessarily expect. For example, Chandler and John are scared of heights, and this activity didn’t really appeal to them. They both gathered their courage, though, and made it safely down each time, and each time they got a little braver, and they even enjoyed it. As John would say, they weren’t afraid of heights, really; they were just afraid of falling. Jessica also made huge steps today. It took some courage to get down the first cliff, and we all sang “Lord, I Need You” as she repelled. At the next cliff, we sang again as she repelled, but this time, we could hear her singing louder than anyone else all the way down. When she reached the bottom, she ran up to us, dancing, hugging, and shouting, “I’m not scared of anything anymore!” It’s great to see how Christ has set her free and how she is so joyful now.

To end the day, we joined the youth group at Isaac’s church. We sang songs and Maryn shared her testimony. It was a good time; our brothers and sisters were an encouragement to us through prayer and love, and it was wonderful to meet them.

Day 6

This morning was a refreshing morning as we attended Isaac’s church. It is called the Salt Church, and the fact that is bilingual was really helpful for us. We sang songs in Spanish and English, and the sermon was preached in English. It was a neat experience to worship in Spanish. It was also cool to know that even though we didn’t know what we were saying, God did, and we were still worshipping Him.

This afternoon, we went to an outlying village to have a mini church service for the residents. We all gathered at a park and sang songs for them while Gabe played his guitar. Isaac translated the songs to Spanish so the people could sing along in their own tongue. Chandler then gave her testimony about how God is setting her free. Ember gave a message after that, where she talked about how a silversmith has to work on silver so that the impurities rise to the top, but the process takes a long time. Treva then demonstrated God taking away our sin by using a water filter to clean the dirty water in a bucket. Not only was it a good demonstration, but we left two water filters there for the people, which was an answer to their prayers because they had been trying to get a filter from the government for a long time.

We played games with the kids afterward. We inflated some soccer balls, played on the park equipment, and just loved on them the whole afternoon. When we left, we stopped by the small church in the village that only has about seven New Testament Bibles. There are 15 people who come to church there, and they need more Bibles. We suddenly remembered the nice woman we had met in the Denver airport who asked about what we were doing and then gave us $100, saying, “Go have fun with it.” That money can buy about 15 Bibles, so we told the pastor and his wife that we are going to do that for them. Then we took a picture together so we can send it to that nice woman from the airport.

God’s people may worship in different languages and in different places, but we all worship the same God who loves us, and that was literally demonstrated to us today. He is faithful, and it’s cool to know that we will all worship Him together one day in heaven.

Day 7

After a lengthy morning at the house, we loaded up the vans and went to Cristo Vive for the rest of the day. We were given a tour of the entire campus, and it’s huge! What was most impressive was the change that God is making through Cristo Vive. Addicts who come there are completely transformed by Jesus; their lives are renewed, and they have hope for a future. Many of the people who come there were on cocaine, crack, meth, marijuana and/or addicted to alcohol, but when they come to Cristo Vive, they leave all of that behind for Jesus and are changed.

The first thing we did was help out in the food line as people came for lunch. The girls were taken to the kitchen to clean and peel potatoes, and crack eggs for supper, while the guys hauled rocks, beans, potatoes and washed cars and sidewalks. During the debrief period, we listened to a testimony from a man named Marco. He had been consumed with drugs, his family had left him, he was deported to Mexico and he was on the verge of killing himself when he suddenly remembered the Cristo Vive brochure someone had given him a while ago. He looked around and found it, called the number, and that was the beginning of his new life. What caught our attention, though, was that he recognized God as the one who had changed him. There was no pride in his voice; God pulled him out of his situation, and God is the one who is continuing to transform him. Every person we met gave the glory to God, and it was so encouraging to see the change taking place in their lives.

 

—Journal excerpts from leaders and students

 

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Spending time with some locals.

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Maryn speaking.

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Gabe playing the guitar, while Treva illustrates the water filter.

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Team leader John and Spencer play with a few of the kids.

 

Honduras

Day 4

We split into two groups and took care of kids today. My group went off to one group that was all focused on play time.  I’m not one for kids, but today I enjoyed playing with the kids more than I have before. Others like Abby and Whitney are experiencing subtle hints that maybe children’s ministry is in their future.

Day 5

Today we were off to visit one of the more obscure villages. We spent an hour trekking rough terrain to get there. I joked that it was a safari to remember. When we got there, it was a little awkward (at least for me) with the language barrier. Usually the first 10-15 minutes are always the most awkward. Once we got the soccer ball and Frisbee going, many of the boys at least opened up and much fun was had. We gave most of the kids notebooks and pencils for school and left the football and Frisbee with them.
Next was the hour long trek home, where I watched the beautiful landscape of Honduras. We were planning to visit a church that evening when more rain came. The lightning was striking just above our heads, some of the loudest thunder I’ve ever heard. The power in the whole city went out for probably almost an hour. Amidst all that, we sat in the hotel lobby with just a candle, an iPod flashlight and a guitar; we worshipped God for a bit. To add icing on the cake, a stray dog, seeking shelter from the storm, sat with us in the hotel during worship. I like to think that’s the most comfort that dog has probably ever had.
The power came on and we finally were ready to head to the Saturday service. It was certainly an engaging service, meant to attract a young audience. It was nice to see a church so excited and active during worship.
Later on in the service, some of us felt an unrecognizable need to be still and pray. At one point, I turned to see everyone around me praying for one of our team members. Two people who didn’t know any English joined in. They didn’t need words to know we were experiencing some spiritual attacks. We were prayed over by our team members, and several locals. It was an incredible view of the multicultural church at work, coming together and praying as one. While the experience was a bit exhausting, we are both doing well now.

Day 6

The next morning, we went to another church. It was nothing like last night, but not in a negative way. It was an older congregation, more relaxed, filled with older people. We had translators in the audience with us during the sermon but unfortunately I was out of earshot of both of them so I was kinda on my own with what was being said. One of our leaders Todd would later tell me that the speaker spoke out of Proverbs 3, specifically v. 24–26 which talks about trusting in the Lord during rough times. It was clear God was speaking to us in response to last night’s misadventure.
“If you lie down, you will not be afraid; when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet. Do not be afraid of sudden terror or of the ruin of the wicked, when it comes, for the Lord will be your confidence and will keep your foot from being caught.” Proverbs 3:24-25
The most notable thing we did was another prayer walk around town in our fellowships. There were many God sightings, I could write a book about every single one! It was cool to see that there is spiritual work being done in us and around us. The personal team testimonies are going well, and they’re bringing us closer as a family.

Day 7

We went to another village where we again visited a school, playing with kids, passing out notebooks, etc. Afterwards, we began visiting houses. We went to one in the middle of nowhere and found an old man who can barely walk, sitting under a shady tree. We heard his story, prayed over him, even sang a hymn with him, all in God’s grace.
The next two houses we gave water filters to; we showed them how to use it and how to install it. The filters should last them ten years if maintained. At this point, it’s dinner time and many are exhausted. Todd gave us the decision to either go back to the hotel to eat, or to visit one more house with him and Marcia. I went with the group to the last house and it ended up being the most emotional visit we made. I could spend forever talking about it, but God moved. Traci and I shared personal stories in relevance to the family’s struggle. I realized now that it was Him pulling me to visit the last house. Some of the girls, Traci and Erika, got to make tortilla bread.

Day 8

Today was a rest day, where we spent the morning going canopying (ziplining). Some are recovering from feeling pretty exhausted, so prayers for them! We spent the rest of the day planning for the next phase of our trip.


—Journal excerpts from Mickey, Experience student

 

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The ladies on the Honduras team!

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Laughing with locals.

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Hannah holding one of the kids.

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Team Honduras playing with the children.

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The Honduras students hanging out.

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Playing music with some of the local children.

 

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The team praying together.

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Host Marcia, with the students at a local school.

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Jordan playing with one of the school kids.

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Mickey enjoying being tackled by some local children.

Ways to be Praying

  • Continued prayers for greater freedom to be known for individuals on the teams, and for truth to be believed over lies.
  • Prayers for preparation (logistically and spiritually) as the teams journey to different areas.
  • For the local individuals the students will encounter in the next several days, may the Lord reveal Himself.
  • Prayers for the team leaders to continue being Spirit-led, following God’s promptings for them and the students.


Join us in prayer! Want to become a prayer partner with Forge? Receive more specific prayer updates by joining our prayer team! Click HERE for more.

Julia Michael

Julia Michael is passionate about telling stories. Whether through blogs, social media posts, or one-on-one conversations, Julia hopes to show others how important their stories are and how they are part of God’s much grander narrative. As we seek Jesus more fully each day, it’s incredible to see how Christ shapes the stories our lives are telling.

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