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