Dear Family and Friends,
Thank you so much for praying for us today as we dedicated our homes. For the past couple days we had seen a lot of the family we built for, Gonzal, Marta, and their four year old daughter Keli. However, we really didn’t know them very well. With a max of two years of Spanish speaking in our more experienced team members (which is really not a lot when comes to conversing), we had a difficult time talking to the family and really only knew them on a superficial level. We cannot say that after today. On the outside of their home were streamers, balloons, and flowers and Gonzal was setting off fire crackers. Today was definitely a special day. When we first got into their new home, we gave them many gifts including blankets, stuffed animals, and toothbrushes (just to name a few things). After that, the family was able to say thanks to us via Dan. They expressed many times how grateful they were to us for our time and for their new house and Marta even began to cry a little, which Dan expressed to us to be a very meaningful thing because Guatemalans do not often cry. After they spoke we were able to say how thankful we were to them for their hospitality and kindness over the past two days. Let’s just say, we all cried a little. We then were able to give them an audio Bible. It is a solar-powered, Spanish Bible which is so small, it can fit into your pocket yet can tell you every verse of the Bible. They were slightly enchanted with the little gadget. After explaining and handing them the Bible, Marta clutched for the rest of our visit. It is possible neither of them can read so this Bible may be the only way they will hear the Gospel and share it with those around them. Now it was God’s turn. Daniel (not to be confused with Dan 🙂 ) is one of the mission’s pastors-in-training and he spoke to Gonzal and Marta using normal objects from their daily routine to explain God’s love for them. Beans symbolized the ‘protein’ and substance of their daily diet, or God. Salt symbolized the flavor God adds to our lives and soap symbolized the cleanse that occurs when we accept God into our hearts. Hermano Jesus, the mission’s pastor, spoke to the family next and asked them if they wished to accept Jesus into their hearts. Their answer was yes. As we kneeled around them praying, you could feel God’s presence in the home. We as a team believe our family was Christians before, but now we think they God truly lives in their hearts. We left them with hugs and blessing of a bright future, however our day was not done. Being the first home to be dedicated, we still had four more homes to pray over. Teams who were not inside the home had the task of praying and singing over the outside of the home trying to keep distractions away. It overall was a beautiful experience of community that affected us all deeply in different ways. Let’s just say today will never be forgotten. However, our fight for eternity for Gonzal, Marta, and Keli is not over. We still must pray that God stays in their hearts and blesses their lives richly. Fittingly, on their wall we painted ‘Dios bendgia este casa’ which means ‘God bless this house’. Hopefully that truly happens.
As a team, we’d like to thank everyone at home who’s bean praying for us. We can definitely feel your prayers for protection as the rain stayed away and only lightly sprinkled on us as we prayed over the last home. It was actually kinda refreshing! Right now, it is down-pouring and our rooms have some puddles forming. Please pray the rain subsides slightly so we can start group devotions; it’s a little loud with the rain pounding against the tin roof.
We love each and every one of you who are reading this and so does God!
Buenes Noches from Guatemala, Al, Lori, Noah, Joe, Laura, and Abby