Our last two weeks in Mexico were absolutely packed!
Our service in Fundamento church continued with Bonnie and Josh both preaching in midweek services. Their gospel preaches contained a powerful message, both spiritually led and well received. Maria and Reuben also lead worship in one of these services and Milly read the scripture in Spanish. Bonnie’s home church also sent a video that was played in a Sunday service, and Fundamento sent one back, as part of the relationship being built between churches in Mexico and the UK, of which there is little connection generally. The church family in Fundamento continued to welcome and receive us until the end, praying for us, sharing conversation, and ALWAYS feeding us. The connection we have made to this church over the two months is extremely special, and bound by Gods love. We continue to pray that the relationship persists after we leave Mexico, and that God will grow and bless our influence there even after we are gone.
Similar relationships were solidified in San Pablo church in the final weeks. Maria, Bonnie and Dan spent the day hiking and swimming in waterfalls with members of the church. It was a beautiful day to spend together, where friendships grew.
Another connection we have made here is to the son of Pastora Diana (whom we stayed with at the beginning of our trip), and his family. We were invited to spend the day at their house, where we had burgers, watched movies, and danced for around 3 hours. It was a lovely highlight where we again bonded with members of God’s global family.
We also had a unique experience serving a Baptist church across three services. We performed a drama, helped with worship, and led activities for a special children’s service. This church was remotely located in the mountains outside of Puebla, and so our presence there was clearly unusual. The congregation was excited and curious, and the Pastor welcomed us lovingly. To experience such a wide range of churches has been incredibly eye opening, each revealing a completely different church culture to learn from and be inspired by. The children were particularly excited by our activities, and we bonded with the congregation over their joy.
Our work in the schools strengthened in the final two weeks. In Carabez, Maria, Bonnie and Milly became friends with some of the girls who were the same age, and went for lunch with them after school one day. This was special as it gave them the opportunity to have more meaningful conversations with them, and it was a really positive experience. Both of the final days in the schools were incredibly emotional. Carabez came first. After being unsure of whether our work in Carabez had made any impact whatsoever, feeling like fish out of water until the end, the team was blown away when we entered the school hall to see the entire school waiting for us. They performed an assembly in which two older students spoke about our impact during our time there, and then we were all given certificates and a gift. It was a huge testament to the work God does that you don’t see, and the way he empowers every step you take to follow his plan, whether you understand it or not.
Our final day at Fundamento was similarly telling, and very emotional. We had breakfast with the school, prepared by the parents of students. We then had an informal assembly where different students and teachers spoke and prayed, and then every member of the team received a card from every single student in the school. There were lots of tears, and it was clear that neither school will ever be forgotten.
We shared a final day trip with Pastor Reuben’s family at the African Safari. This was a day of fun and relaxing for the team, and a time to make memories with the family that had become so special to us over the two months. As a family they radiate Gods spirit, and we have so much to thank them for.
We have a holiday now in Veracruz right by the beach, a perfect opportunity to recover physically, emotionally and spiritually. We are thanking God for this gift.
The entire experience in Mexico has been transforming, challenging, spiritual, and so many more things that are impossible to describe. We have watched each other grow as individuals and as a team, emotionally, spiritually, in wisdom and knowledge, in our gifts, and in our relationships with God. The way we have learned through experience has changed us beyond our understanding, as God has guided us to live out the life he has planned for us. We have had to lean on God daily, when all earthly things have failed, teaching us the almighty power of prayer and faith. Our experience in Mexico has often been like being on the edge of a cliff. Each team member has walked up to the cliff edge, holding God’s hand, stepping out in faith. It is not until you walk right up to the edge that you can see the view in its wholeness. Constantly outside of our comfort zone, we have each stepped out in obedience, with the Father close by, and afterwards seen his glory in the work we have done.
We would love prayer for our next steps. For safe travel into Costa Rica (particularly as the volcanic ash is affecting flights), that we will be well received as a team, that we will be able to adjust well to the change and culture shock, and that we continue to lean on God in the transition period.
To read the previous report click here.