More Team; More God

This team amazes me every day. I go to bed at night with my spirit wiped out AND full of thanksgiving. I wake with anticipation because while I don’t know all that will happen today – I do know without a shadow of doubt – that God will reveal a clear presence of the Holy. It happens every hour with us.

Last night in our reflections of the day Pastora Myriam shared that she needed a Bible for one of the women in her sessions that has expressed a desire to preach. Terry and Julie immediately said, “we brought a Spanish Bible but we didn’t know why!” This is one of our DAILY examples of provision and following.

I am up early and when I waved to Felipa in the kitchen she knew I was really looking to see if the coffee was made. I sit on the steps outside to write because this is the best internet connection. After a few minutes I hear her sweet voice in the morning air: “dos minutos tienes café”

Felipa in the kitchen making breakfast this morning!
Felipa in the kitchen making breakfast this morning!

Sherri Joyce is one of those people that after getting to know her you think, “OK…I would go pretty much anywhere with this lady!” She is a champion of flexibility and engagement in whatever is happening in the moment. And there is a light shining through Sherri’s eyes that, as with many team members, is getting brighter every day we are here.
Sherri Joyce and her buddy making bracelets
Sherri Joyce and her buddy making bracelets

Michael and Jake are musicians at heart and in daily life. Jake just graduated from high school a week or so ago, and Michael is a young adult navigating through life with a job, a band and a dream. Michael was in Nicaragua in 2008 and this is Jake’s first international mission. Both were part of the youth group in our church in earlier years. From guitar strumming, drumming and stove installations..these guys rock! They have emerged as leaders in music sessions, stove installations and generally “hanging out”.

Let me be clear: “hanging out” is just a way of saying that the team is meeting each person exactly where they are…taking time to “be with” them and in doing so they provide a clear message: You are a child of God and worthy of my time and attention. You are not my project.” I praise God for this attitude and Love.

Jake and Michael...the drummer guys:)
Jake and Michael…the drummer guys:)

B.J. is a veteran missionary in Guatemala and other Latin American countries. She is a part of our church and has a heart for missions that runs deep and wide. Her love for the people is overflowing and her gift of helping is endless. Over the years, she has developed many friendships here. It is a beautiful thing to see someone just offer love and love and love. She has washed stove parts, visited in homes, played games and many more things to express the love of Christ here.

B.J. Elder is helping and loving the people wherever she goes.
B.J. Elder..a. veteran in mission with a gift of helping and loving the people wherever she goes.

Michael during recess...a little soccer along the way. Music, soccer, lead singing..."whatever it takes" is his daily attitude
Michael during recess…a little soccer along the way. Music, soccer, lead singing…”whatever it takes” is his daily attitude

Sherri and LaVerne
Sherri and LaVerne
LaVerne and her new best friend...
LaVerne and her new best friend…

LaVerne has served as the church’s Finance & Business Manager for many years. She recently shifted to part-time as she contemplates retirement. It is such fun to witness LaVerne experiencing a country where the church has been in mission for so many years. From checking writing and hearing stories.. to holding the hand of a child…God has perfect timing. It was LaVerne’s “time” to be in Guatemala. We give thanks for this blessing.

Michael, Olivia and Ansley leading singing in the school on Wednesday. FABULOUS trio!
Michael, Olivia and Ansley leading singing in the school on Wednesday. FABULOUS trio!

Olivia and the "Esther crown" made from bamboo leaves. It is our "Plan B" story in case we need another.
Olivia and the “Esther crown” made from bamboo leaves. It is our “Plan B” story in case we need another.

Olivia is a sophomore at Samford University. This is her second international mission; she was in the Dominican Republic last year. Olivia grew up in our church and is gifted in her music and love for children. She brought along a host of crafts and songs to share – all of which have been needed! But I think what has touched me most about Olivia during this mission is the spiritual insights she has shared. She has opened her heart to the Spirit and it is pouring through her in a beautiful way.

I’m losing track of who I’ve introduced through the stories and who you have yet to meet..but more it coming. Our conversations have been seasoned with salt (Colossians 4:6) day and night. Our eyes are being opened to one another as God has shown us how we are connected to one another through our Creator. I don’t know that I would ever see the gifts God placed in each person except by first being connected to God. It is through the eyes of our Maker that we are able to see the Holy in each person. What an amazing gift of grace!

What is God opening your eyes to see today?

4 thoughts on “More Team; More God

  • Oh my! I can only say this morning as I read I felt such a joy to be even from a great distance a part of this mission…. You are making it very Real a nd ‘close up’ for us! The openness you each and all have to the Spirits moving is wonderful…. I know lives are being blessed in all,directions… For team members… For the Guatamala community… For those of us who read your blog and pray. Thank you one and all! Love you!

  • Each of these stories is inspiring and moving! Thank you for sharing your journey and the journey of your team with us!

  • WHAT A PLEASANT SURPRISE TO SEE PIC OF SHERRI JOYCE, FORMERLY A DICKSON COUNTY RESIDENT. WE KNOW SHE WILL ADD MUCH TO THE TRIP. BLESSINGS & PEACE TO ALL – REID & SHIRLEY WALKER

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