Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Mexico- Part 3

After our adventures in the mountain villages we returned to the compound in Victoria. It had been a long couple of days and we were drained- our leaders decided that we would just take it easy that night, get showers, rest and share with one another highlights, stories and things that had touched and blessed us. It was sweet. When it came my turn to share I just had so much to talk about regarding those two days (which is kind of unusual for me in a group setting like that, especially when all eyes are one me). I was so impacted by the genuineness of this ministry. I was even talking with one of the ladies on the trip that night and was stating that this was true "new testament" ministry- this is what Jesus was talking about when he said "Therefore go and make disciples of all nations". These were true apostles. They are truly giving their lives for this- this is what they live for and they carry such joy in it- they're not in it for the money or offerings, they are simply and doing the work that God has called them to do in humility. They are doing it to reach people, to raise up ministers and laborers, to educate those who may never get the opportunity to have an education and to provide a solid foundation through the word. I had never seen anything quite like it- I have heard stories and heard of people like this but never saw it up close and personal. This is true ministry.

I believe it was wednesday when we went into the city of Victoria to go evangelizing. They divided us up into two groups and we walked through some very poverty stricken areas within the city. Dilapidated homes resting beneath the mountain range, no sense of hope or fulfillment found and again we came in contact with more children. Their circumstances were very unfortunate- there were mothers with babies that hadn't been fed properly, one lady had a little girl who was paralyzed, another man in a wheelchair living in practically nothing. It was heartbreaking- tears literally streamed from eyes almost the entire time. The leader of our group was a lady from the church named Maria Louisa. She was one of the most incredible people I have ever met- you could literally feel God's presence around her. Everywhere we went we invited people to come to a cell group and we brought diapers, formula, juice etc. with us to give to people with children. As we went from house to house and person to person we invited them to come and Maria Louisa immediately began talking about Jesus with the brightest radiance on her face- God was inevitably speaking through her. One lady invited us into her tiny home- her living room and bedroom were combined and she only had one more small room off of that for a kitchen which was really nothing. She had two children, one beautiful little girl and an adorable baby boy. She began to cry and tell us of things she was facing- real, difficult and trying circumstances. Maria Louisa shared Christ with her, the hope we find in Him, the truth we find in Him and the life we find in Him. This woman began weeping and clearly stated that she wanted to accept the Lord into her life. We prayed with her, cried with her and rejoiced with her. After we finished praying, Maria Louisa stated that she would be consistent in visiting her every week and picking her up for life group- discipleship. I loved that! They don't just tell people about Jesus, have them pray the sinners prayer and say, "Well, I did what I was supposed to do." (Which can actually do more harm.) No, they consistently disciple them and raise them up as leaders. I also noticed that everywhere we went Maria Louisa carried a pad of paper and pen and she asked people what it was that they needed as she penned each item to be sure she would not forget to bring those items to them. Wow.

Another home we went to was that of a mother who had a little 5 year old girl who had a spine condition and and brain disorder. She can not walk and her brain does not function properly. They too live in this area and we know good and well that they probably can not afford the medical treatment that she needs. We prayed and prayed for this little girl, I kept pleading with God- "just heal her Lord, let us see her healed right now". I know that the Lord has His timing for everything and His will is above ours. We prayed and prayed. I could sense God's presence in that little room and the little girl smiled, I don't know exactly what God did in her at that moment but I know it was the beginning of something.
Again, I was so touched by all of this. I could not keep my eyes dry for very long and that time went by very quickly- too quickly. I suddenly realized that this is it- this is really it. We have such a mindset here in America as an American Christian that if we go to church every sunday, read our bibles for a few minutes a day, pray over our meals and before bed then we are really doing it right and we for sure have a place in heaven. But is ONLY heaven our goal? I surely hope not. Have we neglected to reach out and take the time to do what the word of God tells us to do? I know I have. God opened my eyes on this trip to see how desperate people are, yet we withhold from sharing our faith because we don't have time, we don't think they will listen or we care too much about what people think. If we are truly Christians then God will speak for us and through us. It will show in our demeanor, it will be displayed in our actions and people will notice that we carry something different, something attractive. It's simple, it's not rocket science. We have the power of God living in us, we have the greatest hope in the world. We have had a real experience. "The man with an argument can't argue with a man who has had an experience."- I can't rememeber who said that but it's so true.

Here are some more pictures...

The beautiful mountain range in the city where we went evangelizing.

Allison, Meagan and I before we went evangelizing.

Going from home to home

Outside one of the homes.

Sadly enough, I did not get many pictures of us evangelizing because we were praying and talking with people a lot. I know a lot of people who did and I am waiting to get copies of their pictures and I will put them up when I do because they are really good. Thanks for reading!

Love and blessings,
-Amber Denae

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