I have almost made it three weeks! It’s so hard to think it has been that long! This last week has been great, but has been a struggle. I have not been able to communicate, and I miss all of you so much. I was sure before I came that it would be very easy to establish communication, but I had to remind myself that I am in a third world country. Since the last update so much has happened. Last Thursday I started going to the park in La Mercidad where a church feeds the homeless, prostitutes, and drug addicts. I met a guy named Soel; he was walking up to get food and fell and scratched his face pretty bad. He was high on a type of glue that they sniff here, homeless, and hating life. I picked him up sat him down, and began to love on him. He was so scared when I put my arm around him; I’m sure because he gets beat up a lot. I got him some food and we began to talk. He is 22 years old and his parents kicked him out of his house when he was 15. They live a block away and will not have anything to do with him. The park is full of people just like Soel, but my heart really broke for him. I shared the gospel with him and we will begin a bible study in the park this Thursday! In praying about coming the Lord laid upon my heart to start a bible study with six guys, and I had no idea how that would work. It’s so amazing that the Lord has already begun that process. In praying for our time together I have asked the Lord to prevent him from getting high this week so that he will be able to focus on what the Lord will show him. I truly believe Romans 1:16, which tells us that the gospel is the power of God for salvation, and it is my eager hope that that process would begin in Soel’s life this week. I also found out that there is a church of the santa muerte two blocks from our house. I will post pictures soon. I went in and had a brief conversation with the priest of the church, which has lead to another conversation this week, and I am going to go there to visit with him every Wednesday. When I walked into his office I was quite stunned at what I saw…On the top shelve of his bookshelf he had a statue of; Mary, Jesus, santa muerte, and Buddha. I felt like Paul walking into Athens in Acts 17. I also have had the opportunity to share the gospel with several of my classmates during our break time. There is still a huge language barrier but I am learning quickly. No one in the house I live speaks Spanish, and I have not been able to communicate with you back in the states, which in some way has been so good and the Lord has shown me great things in that.
After spending much time in prayer this last week Paco and I have decided to go to the Day of The Dead festival on Saturday to pass out gospels of John. This is a Catholic holiday, but the santa muerte have taken it a step farther. Whereas the Catholic Church honors the dead and spends the time remembering those who have passed, the santa muerte worship death itself. In Tepito they have blocked off four blocks to have a huge party that will be to honor the saint of death. It is literally worship of satan. Paco and I will go around ten in the morning on Saturday and stay there all day until it gets dark. We will spend the day sharing the love of Christ, and handing out Gospels of John with the hope of starting conversations. It says in John 1 that Jesus is the light of the world, and in 1 John 1:5 that in Him there is no darkness at all. Even the dark is light to God! Before I came the Lord showed me that these people don’t need me they need my God. It has been my prayer that I would be the display of God’s rightness, and a light to the nations.
Food for thought:
Yesterday here in Mexico was a huge day for the Catholic Church. It was a day that they honor a saint, and spend the whole day remembering him. There were so many people carrying statues of this saint all over the city. Parents dressed their babies to look like him, and there were so many teenagers as well as adults with statues. Last night when I was laying in bed I had a thought…”Who is this God that not only can be formed by human hands, but that needs a human to carry him around?!” Then it hit me! Here in Mexico they worship created things just was we do in the states, they just don’t try to hide it, or try to justify it by calling it something else. As stupid as I thought it was for these people to waste their time and money on a non-responsive piece of stone, how often do I do the same with idols in my life? Acts 17:24-25 says “The God who made the world and everything in it, being Lord of heaven and earth, does not live in temples made by man, nor is he served by human hands as though he needed anything, since he himself gives to all mankind life and breath and everything.” And yet so often we even take godly things and make them idols. Lenard Raven Hill told a story one time of a girl in his church who wanted to be a missionary her whole life, and when she graduated college set out to do so. He didn’t have a peace about her being a missionary, or even that she was regenerate. They spent so long talking and trying to work through the issue, but she was afraid if she was saved God would not let her be a missionary. She was willing to sacrifice fellowship with the Father for missions! How often do we do the same? We all need to examine our heart and clear out the idols we have made.
-English Bible study on Tuesday nights. We had twelve yesterday, and I shared the gospel. I feel like the Lord is working in the hearts of a couple people there.
-My fellow classmates at UNAM where I attend school. I have begun the process of sharing the love of Christ and believe He is also working there.
-The church. We meet in our house, and there is no more room. We had 25 last Friday in a very small living room. There is a house for sell across the street that is for sell and we are praying that the Lords will be done with it.
-I am starting this week to teach Paco how to prepare a sermon so that he can start preaching at the church as I disciple him.
-The bible study with Soel, and that the Lord will work in the park on Thursdays as we feed the needy.
-For our time in Tepito at the day of the dead festival on Saturday. That He would open the hearts of the people that the Lord will protect us as He sees fit.
Thank you all for your prayers and support as God works through Sing For Joy Missions to make His name known among the nations!