This past week we were on a missions trip in Mexico. In 2008, a church youth group came to the ministry where we have served so all of their young people could attend a Journey to the Heart. These young people had worked all sorts of odd jobs making and selling tamalis, washing cars and cleaning houses to save up enough money to travel up to Chicago and attend this ten-day life-changing retreat. On that particular Journey to the Heart, Priscilla helped run the kitchen and immediately won the hearts of many of the young people with her cooking skills and joyful attitude. Several of the young people stayed on afterwords to help in various ways at the ministry. For many years now we have wanted to go to Mexico to visit them and share in their church and with their youth group.
We first arrived in the city of Guadalajara and stayed at a beautiful home off of Lake Chapala.
The first day we were there, our kind hosts gave us a grand tour of down town Guadalajara. At one point we were at some very busy market locations and we began passing out little portions of Scripture. People seemed to come from all directions and eagerly took the tracts. Several came back and asked for more for friends or family. What a refreshing experience! In a little over an hour, over a 1,000 tracts were passed out.
We were then treated to a very nice dinner. The steak was AMAZING and it was only around $10. It was called arrachera! Yum!!!
After a fun day in Guadalajara area, we flew to Los Mochis where this church and youth group is from. We enjoyed reuniting with old friends and making many new ones too.
The church kindly arranged opportunities for us to minister in various ways such as this local orphanage that was just started two years ago by a couple in their early twenties who just had their first child of their own. They are doing a great job caring for an additional thirteen precious children.
It was neat to witness the faith they have that God will provide for their needs.
David had the opportunity to teach several object lessons as well as have the children act out a story that he told which emphasized the need for truthfulness.
The young lady next to Priscilla has become the only mother some of these children have known since they have been rescued from the streets.
Several times on this trip, Priscilla had the precious opportunity to share the Gospel and led several young people to place their faith and trust in Jesus Christ alone for salvation.
It was fun to see the young people from the youth group of the church we were serving with get involved in helping needy children and pouring love on them. Here we all piled together for a quick picture before we had to take off.
On the way home from the orphanage, we stopped to get some food with the young people we ministered along side.
Since Los Mochis is along the coast, sea food is plentiful and super delicious.
On Sunday, David had the opportunity to share a message with the whole church.
Afterwords, we gathered with several of the families at the pastor’s house for a time of fellowship. Often, we find that ministry can happen just as much around the meal table as from a pulpit (it can be super enjoyable too :-).
Several ladies of the church helped with final chopping of vegetables.
These twin boys took their duty seriously of guarding the quesadillas.
On Sunday afternoon, many of the young people took us out to the sandy beaches on the ocean for a game of soccer and then David gave another message.
In all, David ended up sharing six messages with the church young people and Priscilla along with Tabitha Paine shared some other messages for the girls.
On one particular evening, while David met with the young men, Priscilla and Tabitha invited many of the girls over to talk about how to guard their heart.
For a fun project, they made American style brownies…
And American style cup cakes.
They were a hit!
We had the privilege of meeting the families of some of the young people who came to Chicago for the Journey to the Heart, some of which had stayed on to continue serving for a season. We had the privileged of visiting another orphanage run by an American couple that specifically reaches out to those who are deaf and mute. Paul made fast friends with many young people.
Lunch time is a great time to expand our very limited Spanish vocabulary.
David again had the opportunity to share the importance of building lives of good character one choice at a time.
Cooking lessons were underway as Priscilla refined her skills and learned new tips on preparing Mexican Cuisine.
A few months ago, the young people received some Dutch Blitz cards. I never would have known that they just learned how to play, because they were incredibly good and very fast.
On our last day there, they surprised us by renting a special boat to take us on a tour. We enjoyed it very much. We saw dolphins, sea lions, and all sorts of birds plus we enjoyed the fellowship with the young people as well.
Please pray for the people of Mexico!
I love the Scripture, “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men” (Matthew 4:19).