The last few weeks have had lots of highs and lows. As a team we have been strengthened through some difficult days, and found joy even when we have been low. We all suffered with various illnesses including a fierce stomach bug. The short term coordinator, Mayra, was such a blessing during this time. God answered our prayers for comfort through the provision of Mayra, who cared for us until we were better.
We have also had some really exciting experiences. We had the opportunity to be a part of the first service of a church plant, which was in a small deprived village near a volcano. It was clear how God is going to use this church as a beacon of light in the village. Josh, Milly and Dan all shared testimonies and Bonnie prayed for a family in the church whose son was struggling with drug addiction. Once again we were struck by the hospitality of the Pastor and his family, who took us out to eat on both the Friday and Saturday. The warmth of God’s family here in Mexico is so inspiring, and definitely something that the team will take home.
Then on Sunday, Milly and Dan attended San Pablo (Mayra’s church) whilst Reuben, Maria and Josh attended fundamento. (Bonnie was sick with tonsillitis). At San Pablo, Milly and Dan led a prayer time, inviting the Holy Spirit to move in the church. Members of the congregation afterwards said that they really felt the Spirit move, which was such an answer to prayer as it was what the team had felt guided to try and incite. Maria, Reuben and Josh all shared testimonies at fundamento, again a powerful witness to their faith, and they led children’s work which they said was really successful and fun.
The team spent a day with members of San Pablo church at a retreat center called Oasis. It was a really good time for building relationships through sports and worship, which have been growing since.
God has certainly answered some of our prayers for the schools as well. In particular at Carabez. The team was initially struggling to break through some of the boundaries, often feeling like a fish out of water in the classroom, but in the last two weeks we have made some good friendships. We went to the cinema which a group of teenagers, and the girls on the team have plans to meet up for coffee with some of the older High school girls (none of which are Christian) . We are so excited that we have finally been able to form some stronger relationships, and the atmosphere when we are present at the school is so welcoming and positive. We have been involved with a school project where we are each in one of the groups, and this has been a great opportunity to focus our time on a smaller number of students, and have more meaningful conversations. We also joined in with their dance class yesterday and learned some traditional Mexican dances. The teacher was so happy that we enjoyed their traditional style, and we had such a laugh with the students.
Our work in fundamento also continues to be blessed. We are constantly praying for ‘Holy Spirit energy’ which has been carrying us through each day. The children engage with our English lessons so well, and we had the chance to celebrate ‘children’s day’ with them as well which is a big national celebration here in Mexico. We led games with the children, helped to judge a dressing up competition, and had party food. It was such a fun day and a really nice opportunity to just enjoy spending time with the children outside of the classroom, again strengthening our bonds with them.
This Sunday, Bonnie, Dan and Milly were invited to a family’s house for lunch after fundamento church. We did karaoke for hours and it was such a laugh. Eating together and just socialising has been a really good way to learn about the culture. They had some really good discussions with Pastor Rueben about the church here in Mexico and in England, and it really helps you to understand the specific needs for the church family in that country, and their specific prayers.
A tough time for the team was when we felt an intense spiritual attack about a week ago. We had all individually been having different experiences, but during a devotional we brought it all into the light. We prayed together during the devotional, and then later in the evening during a worship time. We condemned any spiritual forces, and God was our shield for the rest of the night. It was a time of vulnerability for the team, and it brought us closer together. We also all agreed that it was merely a clear sign that we are doing exactly what God wants us to be doing, which was a comfort and encouragement.
Lots of members of the team have also been getting involved in the morning devotionals in the school through worship. With Kiki (a young guy who works in the school), several of us have sung at the front and helped to lead the worship. It has been such a blessing from God to be given a stage where you can grow your confidence and your spiritual gifts, and it has been such an honour to watch people flourish in this way.
We also celebrated Mother’s Day which is a big celebration here in Mexico. We bought flowers for all of the mothers in school and it was a lovely way to show our appreciation from the women that have welcomed us so amazingly and made us feel so at home here.
Prayer requests from the team:
⁃ For God to continue working in the team’s relationships with each other
⁃ For ‘Holy Spirit energy’ as we have a big final two weeks with little rest time
⁃ For God’s protection from spiritual attack
⁃ That anything God wants us to achieve before we leave Mexico, we will get done in the next two weeks, and that we will have the guidance to know how God wants us to serve
⁃ For guidance to know what and who God wants us to pray for specifically
⁃ For positive relationships with teenagers in Carabez, where we can be a witness to the faith
– For good physical and mental health in the team
To read the previous report click here.