“And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, ‘Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?’ Then I said, ‘Here I am! Send me.'” (Isaiah 6:8-9)
Two days ago I came home from 9 days in the lovely country of Ecuador. I was blessed to see God’s hand at work in our mission team’s efforts to share His love and salvation with those who do not know Him. Our team of 39 Christians said ‘Send me!’ And God did just that.
I have always had a tender heart for those less fortunate than I. This has led to a heart for missions. A mission does not have to be in another country. It is in our own back yard. It can be in the grocery store, at work, or even in the church itself. Yes, there are lost people who are church members. Every person on this earth needs to hear the Gospel of Christ. They must hear the testimonies of those who are saved, what their lives are like since salvation,and what Jesus has done in their lives. This mission just happened to be in Ecuador, and 39 Christians went to share Jesus and show His love.
We spent two days at an orphanage. As I walked through the gate, I experienced that choking sensation, that one where you know you are going to cry, but you try to hold back, as your lip begins to tremble. When I saw the children running towards us, that was over; I was in full ‘tears’ mode. But as I came to know them, and the people who worked there, I also found joy. Little children always bring laughter and love, no matter their circumstances.
They did not have much. The playground was rather sparse. The house needed extensive repair. Many of their needs were addressed by our team the two days we were there. But the greatest need was love. Kids attached themselves to particular people, but all of them loved all of us. We let them play with our cameras, phones, our hair. We kissed them, hugged them, and helped to feed them. As we taught Vacation Bible School, we watched them watching us. Our interpreters repeated our words, but the kids still watched us. And I believe they heard us; they heard Jesus.
Only 3 ladies work at the orphanage. They depend on the generosity of those in the community to provide for their needs. Our missionaries are very involved in this. They take food and clothing often. They encourage the ladies; they love on the children. But even they cannot meet all the needs. We met the ladies. They are exhausted, as they take care of 40 children. It is amazing how they do it with so little help, so little provision. But they do it. Because of Jesus, they do it. He touches everything! He is Our Hope, everywhere.
“Jesus said, ‘Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?'” Matthew 6:26
(Part 2 Wednesday, July 2)