This past April I had the great privilege of being a part of my church’s missionary team serving the people of Rancho De Sus Ninos in Tecate, Mexico. Our purpose was to love on the kids in the orphanage and help with building projects around the property. And, as is true of most missions trips, we seemed to receive more than we went to give. We were blessed to attend two church services where God showed up in mighty ways. We visited one local church and realized shortly before arriving that we were the service – instructed to give the message and our personal testimonies. We gained new skills while mixing and pouring cement and creating a sidewalk foundation in baked clay ground. We had the pleasure of being part of the Sunday Water Ministry, the Monday Trash Ministry, and the Thursday evening mobile Outreach Ministry to local children and adults. And, we were blessed by the loving faces of happy children wanting to return love to us as we played and interacted with them. Fingernail polish and sidewalk chalk were a big hit.
The most impressive parts of the trip, for me, were the Water and Trash Ministries. We drove into the outlying neighborhoods and offered free, clean water to fill their blue water barrels located outside their houses. (Official water companies would require payment for water.) As we knocked on doors and offered water, we also offered prayer for any situations that concerned them. The people were responsive and friendly – unlike the response of knocking on doors here in the U.S.. The motto that day seemed to be “We came to offer physical water but also Jesus’ living water”.
The Trash Ministry took us to other outlying neighborhoods to show we cared about their surroundings. We filled huge plastic bags with trash of all sorts. It was hot. It was windy. The lesson here was that just as physical trash hampers the beauty of the landscape, the trash we carry around in our souls hampers the beautiful person God created us to be. He cares about that trash most of all. Although we didn’t knock on doors this time, we took the opportunity to ask God how we could pray for the neighborhood and those who crossed our path. That collecting experience became a slide show and speaking opportunity that I presented to a group at my church. God can use any and all the things we experience for a testimony of His great love. We just need to tap into His creative heart.
In Mexico, I learned a lot about God’s love and His desire to shower love on people. I delighted in being part of that and didn’t want to leave Mexico and all the riches of my experience at the border. There is an exciting outcome from my visit that I will share with you in my next post. Come back on Tuesday and see what inspiration the Lord dropped into my heart.