Sometimes this missionary work stuff can get a bit tiresome and frustrating…and it can become really easy to think that God isn’t at work simply because some things aren’t perfect. A couple of weeks ago I was at our church plant in La Victoria (which shares the same space with our Castillo Fuerte Mercy House there) trying to run our Saturday night kids’ Bible class…alone. Usually one of my fellow missionaries is able to help me out…but that night she had to be at a funeral. And I totally forgot to call one of our church members who might have been able to help me. So after two hours of not doing a very good job of controlling rowdy kids and also trying to teach a Bible class…I shrugged off that night as not being much of a success in this Kingdom work. I assumed that none of the kids got anything out of the lesson and that it had all been a waste of time. Thankfully I don’t have that attitude every day…but that was definitely my attitude that day.
And then that next Monday afternoon, I was chilling at our Castillo Fuerte Mercy House in La Victoria…working on some Bible study stuff while the kids were in their “talleres” (classes) with our teachers.
Just then, one of the kids who had been at the Bible class on Saturday night walked in (just a bit late!) with her brother…and before she dashed upstairs, she asked me, “We’re supposed to read one page a day from Matthew, right?”
“Huh?” I asked.
“I’ve been reading one page a day from Matthew, like you told us,” she replied.
And that’s when I remembered that, at the end of the Saturday night Bible class, I had given out some Bibles to a few kids that didn’t have their own Bibles at home…and rather than just giving them the Bibles, I had suggested that they actually dive in and read them…and I had suggested that they start by reading from Matthew every day (so that they could start learning the stories about Jesus…’cause everyone should be learning more about Jesus). Ironically, a major point in my Bible class had been the gift that we have to be able to connect to God through his Word and receive his Holy Spirit. So hearing on Monday that at least one kid was actually reading her Bible…I realized that God actually had been at work that night, even if I hadn’t seen it right then. And sometimes that’s for the best…’cause it helps me remember that this is all his work (as he works through me), not my work. He should get the credit, not me.
And here’s a few more photos from the work going on in La Victoria: