We did something today that changed my entire outlook on the world. We were able to go out into the community of Tres Reyes and hear the families’ stories.
This impacted all of us because we saw how different their lives were and how they didn’t have all the material things like we do in America. They didn’t even speak our language. But they had one thing greater than all of those things: the love of Jesus Christ. The most touching part was their knowledge of that truth. We were able to visit each house and pray over them. We crowded around and laid a hand on the families and prayed for their families, their homes, their loved ones. Some of the mothers started to cry because of their gratitude for our prayers. Our small acts of care changed their lives. And we were able to learn a little something about all of these incredible families.
This post isn’t as long today because their are too many stories, too many emotions to compile that I can’t fit it all into one blog post. (Maybe I’ll write a novel someday.) But by the end of the day, we all teared up within our team and thanked God for this beautiful day.
There’s a large mural painted at the Tres Reyes soccer field saying: “Nada Es Imposible Con Dios,” which means “Nothing Is Impossible With God.” We were reminded of this truth today as we visited the families in Tres Reyes, and it is a beautiful truth. I will ask you all today to remember this whenever you feel discouraged or lost. And remember to ask each of our team members what they experienced today. I’ll bet you they will smile.
Today was impactful.
We were able to serve at the Tres Reyes Community Center built by Back2Back. The center was built for people living in the Tres Reyes community because this community in not rich by any means. Back2Back built the center to bring joy and education to those who needed it, especially the kids.
Before our team was able to meet these kids, we were able to serve Back2Back by cleaning up the center, building brick walls, and raking the soccer field (which was given because Tres Reyes didn’t have a nearby soccer field). These jobs were hard, but good in the end because we realized how much we were helping the community.
After working, we gathered at the entrance and welcomed all the Tres Reyes kids into the center and gave out high fives and welcoming calls. Their faces lit up with joy when they saw the team.
When they all came inside, we each separated into different classes for the kids such as art class, computer class, and gymnastics class. These classes were made to help Tres Reyes kids learn the importance and fun of education.
After this, we ran out and just had fun with the kids. Ourselves and the kids played soccer as Americans vs. Mexicans (at request of the kids), and others of us played volleyball. It was incredible to see the kids run around and just have fun with each other and with us. I still believe there is no such thing as a language barrier when playing with kids. And my belief was certainly put into action today.
Whenever I think about today, I think about God’s love is larger than language. It’s larger than a different culture. It spans the entire world despite differences. I loved how we as a team were able to learn this truth firsthand. It was hard to impact the kids at first, but once we were able to show God’s love to one another today, everything changed.
We’ll see you tomorrow.
Alas, the Mexico 2017 team has just arrived at the airport and are waiting for the flight. Everybody enjoyed the drive to Indianapolis, and we exchanged stories about good times. Getting to know each other is very important, and I think we’re off on a great start. Currently, we are hanging out in the airport, some of us playing dutch blitz, and others eating food.
But the Indy Airport is pretty big…
So, we have some time we can kill. Just like I am able to write this blog post right now.
My name is Braden, by the way. I am going to tell you all about our team and our adventures in this country called Mexico. I am truly excited for this trip and what it will bring to our group. I hope we will grow closer to each other as we grow closer to Christ.
Please follow us as you read this blog! You will be able to hear so many stories from me, and a hundred more stories from the rest of the group.
SEE YOU IN MEXICO!
Today was neat!
We went to Vida Life, which is a bilingual church in the area. Church staff spoke in both English and Spanish (and for that reason, service was twice as long), but the passion of the church members soared as they worshiped. They knew the power of God, and it was evident in their actions and speech.
What a great way to spend time with the Lord and see His glory.
After church, we came back to the house (the house we are living at for the week) we set it up for a pool party with the local kids who hang out with Back2Back a lot.
Hamburgers (Lots of them)
Cool pool jumping
Unique desserts (they had a dessert trolley come to their garage, and they served chocolate, peanut butter, cheese, bananas, etc wrapped in a waffle cone type shell. This was a delicious treat to be able to share with the kids.)
And much more.
It was a great thing to get to know those kids and just have fun with them. They couldn’t speak English, so it was difficult at first, but after a few minutes the language barrier wasn’t much of a barrier anymore. We didn’t need to know Spanish to speak to them. We could speak to them through our body language and our willingness to spend time with them.
It made me remember God didn’t make the language barrier in order to separate us, he made it to find different ways of getting along besides talking.
Sunday was a happy day, and I am thankful our team and I could take part in it. What a great way to start out the week.
3rd row L-R: Andrea Baker, Holly Carroll, Hannah McLaughlin, *Lauren Miles, *Caroline Poland, Chelsea Sweet, Tia Etter
2nd row L-R: Nancy Cotom-Lopez, Riley Hochetetler, Celeste Pauta, Makenna Holz, Cristiana Spears, Caroline Kemper
1st row L-R: Joe Ingersoll, Jusung Ho, Braden Ochs
- That we become Christ’s hands and feet while breaking down our personal and cultural barriers, and that the Lord would transform us as a group and use us as needed.
- That we would be a team supportive of one another, and a team that leads through humble service as we come alongside Back2Back.
- That we would leave our comforts at home and step into an uncomfortableness with Christ so that He may make us more like Him and give us the eyes and ears that see the needs of His people.
Team Verse: Ephesians 2:10
For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
The team will be partnering with Back2Back at their Cancun site: http://back2back.org