“O Lord, you are so good, so ready to forgive, so full of unfailing love for all who ask for your help.” -Psalm 86:5
Hello from Guatemala, Church! Today was our team’s last full day of ministry here in the towns surrounding Mazatenango.
Our day began with a sweet devotional on the armor of God by Allie. She reminded the team that we don’t have to fear evil because we have the armor of God and also that as Christians we must be ready to share the gospel. This is our good news and our hope and we should be ready to share it even though it may not always be received. What a great reminder going into our last full day of ministry!
After our devotion we headed out to the community of Las Animas. We visited a school and encouraged the kids to attend a VBS-type event that we held at a local home later that afternoon, and then began our house visits. One of the first visits we made was to the home of a woman named Juana. Juana was a professing believer and had gone to church at one point, but stopped because of the many difficulties in her life, both familial and financial. David was able to share scripture with her that emphasized the goodness of the person of Jesus and we were able to pray over Juana that she would find peace through Jesus even in the midst of the difficulties that she was facing. After this visit, the team split into two groups. Marian, Jennifer, and I (Jordan) were then able to visit the home of Carmen and Elvira. After talking with them for awhile we learned that both Carmen and Elvira had accepted Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord before, but neither of them had been attending church. We shared the gospel with both women, and Elvira admitted that though she confessed to trust in Christ, she never felt peace. After some questions by Jennifer, Elvira admitted that she still didn’t completely understand sin and Jennifer was able to further clarify the truth of sin and salvation. Carmen was an older lady who was overcome with sadness at the difficulties of her health and was ready to find relief. While no one person can judge the salvation of another, it seemed that our presentation of the gospel was well received and thought over. We then prayed that the truth of Jesus would be made known in the lives of these women and for healing for Carmen.
Our second visit was to the home of Grelis, another professing believer who had not been coming to church regularly. Unlike the last women, Grelis was able to read and so she had been reading passages in the Bible. She shared that she had read in Isaiah just yesterday! Grelis also said that she understood the importance of community and wanted to be involved in God’s church but was struggling to get involved in a church. While Grelis shared that she was struggling to forgive some people in her life, she seemed understanding when we shared that forgiving others conforms us to the image of Christ, which is the goal after we are saved. All of these women and their kids were invited to our event at the home later this afternoon and all of them came! Praise be to God for how He is working in the hearts of these women!
Our event later in the afternoon was at the home of a man named Rudi. Rudi is not a pastor, but he built an extra room onto his house so that kids and teenagers could have a place to meet and learn about Jesus each Friday. While attendance seemed shaky at first, around thirty-five kids and seven adults came out to learn about Jesus, play games, and enjoy a snack. The kids who came out were very attentive and it was encouraging to see God working in the hearts of the next generation!
I’m so thankful to have served alongside this team for the past three days. It has been so encouraging to see the White family’s love for Christ and their love for the people of Guatemala. Marian has been so helpful for all of us non-Spanish speakers and so intentional in praying for those we have talked to. Dossie and Benjie’s joyfulness has been infectious to be around whether it’s with serving the kids through acting out Bible stories (I think Benjie has definitely found a new career in acting) or welcoming and loving on the people that they met despite language barriers. The James kids have loved the kids here so well. I’ve loved seeing Jennifer’s love for missions and her infectious and sweet personality. We’ve had such sweet times of fellowship this week!
One thing that you can be praying for is the leadership of the churches here in Guatemala. While there are a few churches there aren’t many leaders and the people in the villages aren’t being discipled, and in many areas the gospel is not being intentionally shared. It’s saddening to see people who want to learn but there are no resources to do so, especially considering that many people can’t read. We are so blessed to have leaders who want to disciple us in Mt. Pleasant. Please pray that faithful, God-fearing leaders will be brought up to lead the people of Guatemala and advance the gospel.
While we are sad to leave, we are excited for the days to come. Thank you for all your prayers and we look forward to sharing more when we return!