Thursday, January 26, 2012
Chris here... we're in the US, Lori is working thru a trail of doctors and diagnostic tests, getting ready for an up-coming surgery... we are also getting our annual financial reports out from 2011 (painful)... ahh, the taffy pull of 'life', 'business' and ministry... twists and turns and TIME...
(ps, pray for Lori...)
Thursday, January 12, 2012
Here’s a story about ministry in Mexico, and how God can surprise you and make things happen to bring forth His wonderful Love.
We came to San Vicente this trip wanting to give out knitted hats in the work camp named Garcia. Both Lori and I have been to that camp in years past, and we know the people there are isolated (it’s over 10 miles out from the Village), there are a lot of kids, there’s significant spiritual-warfare there (chronic alcoholism and spousal abuse)… and it’s been really, really cold here this year.
Two other bits of background. First, Lori spends the entire year gathering hats from dozens of faithful women who knit and crochet these bits of love for the poor. We really, really want these ‘out and distributed’ during the cold season.
Second, people are not allowed to just walk into these work-camps, unless they want to chance taking a bullet. You have to go in with an invitation, or with somebody well known by the people of the camp.
So, when we arrived on Tuesday, we tried to connect with the ‘person of peace’ at the church for Camp Garcia. Her name is Azusena, and she is regularly involved in a feeding program and child evangelism afternoon at Garcia.
Well, we found out that Azusena was in Ensenada at the bedside of her sick mother.
Hmmm, we thought we were supposed to go to Garcia this trip. The roads out to Garcia are finally passable (the previous rains basically meant 4-wheeling only, way out of our capability). Hats are all packed and ready. Hmmm. What are You up to, Lord?
Thursday night, there was a knock on our door in our little rented shack. It’s Azusena, who just got back to San Vicente, and was told by her husband that ‘Lorena y Cris’ wanted to go to Garcia. Let’s go tomorrow! We had tea and biscuits, made plans and prayed.
Friday noon, we pack up the vehicle and head out.
We got to Garcia, and had a great time. Azusena led the kids in worship and a couple of Bible memory verses they have been working on. As all the parents watched and listened, she did a great little bit on the Three Kings and their gifts to Jesus.
Oh, yes. Today is the Feast of the Three Kings (Dia de los Tres Magos). In Mexican culture, gifts are not given at Christmas, they are given on Three Kings day. Today is a special day.
Just as we’re finishing the impromptu worship time, a little girl tells Azusena that she knew we were coming because she prayed the night before to Jesus, asking that somebody would come out to the Camp for Dia de los Tres Magos. She said the Lord told her that He was going to send somebody with gifts to celebrate. Azusena was quite excited that we were the answer to this little girl’s prayer.
So, Lori kicks into high gear and we give away beautiful hand-made hats, and gloves scarves to everyone. The babies also get warm booties. After the usual chaos of the hat distribution to all (children and adults, 55 in all), gratitude is expressed, we hug and kiss (yes, we kiss in Mexico… on the cheek…) and head back as the sun is beginning to set. A great time, definitely what we hoped for.
We returned to the Village. I know I’m still in awe that we could be part of the answer to a little girl’s prayer. I know that little girl’s faith was greatly encouraged today. “We three kings…”
Thanks to all the people who pray and support us as missionaries to be here. Thanks to all those who make and send hats to be distributed.
You are all a part of the answer to that little girl’s prayer.
Your bro, Chris
How exciting to see one of Albina's financial goals become a reality! For months the focus of her home-based sewing business has been to purchase some windows for their cement block home. For several visits she has had me put aside her earning. There isn't a bank in town, so she has had me keep aside her "extra" until she had enough to purchase 4 windows. Boy, does the extra light that they allow in made a difference. Albina has already sewed curtains for the new windows and is hoping to soon have enough funds to secure more windows.