Each day I spend here in San Diego is a further blessing than the one before. It is obvious that the Lord is at work through our team. I can’t believe what He has been doing here, and the opportunities that we have been able to have. We have focused on identifying needs in the community and investing in these needs, with the final goal of being able to share the changing power of Jesus Christ, and how He has changed each one of our lives as well.
We have had multiple opportunities to make relationships with and talk to the locals here. In fact, during any group activity there is constantly a new face, with a new story, and a new opportunity to share the love of Christ. What an encouragement it is to see and to experience the work of God here in San Diego. As well, we have taken one day a week to spend in the classroom learning how to better serve the Lord, and how to better live life on mission.
We have been challenged in many areas such as our prayer lives, being a Christian leader, and most recently, simply pursuing Christ in every word and action, everyday. This concept is so simple, yet often difficult to carry out. How much more faithful servants would we be if we aligned our will with the Lord’s, simply by pursing Him with all that we have. It certainly is no easy feat, but one that we as a team have been challenged to do, and one that we have been doing our very best to carry out.
One day, in particular, gave us the opportunity to practice what we have been learning and striving towards. Last Saturday we went to Rosarito, Mexico for the day to lead an outreach program for the kids and their parents in the area. When we crossed the border it was as if we had stepped through a portal. The difference between San Diego and Tijuana was so stark it was saddening; from a flourishing city to third-world slums. As we drove down the streets, I was convicted of the luxurious lifestyle I live in comparison with those in Mexico. When we arrived in Rosarito we went into the community, inviting all who we came across to the program.
It is so cool to see how loving and selfless this community was. Coming from a culture that is so selfish regardless of the excess they own, it is interesting to see that even in poverty, the Hispanic people are willing to put others before themselves. Shortly after, we returned to the venue as the event began. I was able to help the kids make bracelets that would constantly remind them of the gospel by the use of colored beads. Thankfully we had a translator, Samuel, to help us portray this glorious message to these kids. It was great to see the happiness in the kids’ faces when you tied the bracelets around their wrists.
When things slowed down with the bracelets, I was able to hike up the overlooking hill and I got to see the beauty of the country. In the midst of all the poverty, there was still beauty, both in the land, and especially in the people that we were able to minister to and love. They have value, and we are called to minister to them, regardless of the language barrier or the difficulty to get to them. What a privilege it was to be able to do this.
The time that I think I enjoyed the most while we were there was a conversation I was able to have with three teenagers. The four of us were waiting to be subbed into the fútbol game and were just able to get to know each other. Regardless of my broken Spanish, I truly enjoyed interacting with those boys. It was simply a great time to be able to interact with the people there in Mexico. Please be praying for them and for all those that we have been able to interact with while we have been here.
Overall, it was an amazing day, one that I could certainly relive. While we came back in dire need of rest, it was easily a highlight of the trip. One of the main lessons I was able to learn from that day was that God’s love transcends all boundaries. Regardless of the language barrier, the actual land boundary, or any other self-construed boundary pretense, we were able to share Christ, only by His grace. If we live life on mission with the idea that God’s love transcends all boundaries, pursing Him in all that we do, there is nothing that He can’t use us for. I pray that this be the case with all of us for the remaining two weeks, as well as when we return to our communities.