When we come home from the field, it always is difficult to return to our “daily lives.” While team members are grateful for their lives in America, upon their return to the States they can have a difficult time processing the past ten days of being focused on God, His love for people, and His grace to use team members to bless others. Team members are doing something eternally significant, and the reality of it tends to hit when they try to re-enter life as it was. Venezuela was no different. Here are a few of their stories.
“Persistence in Showing God’s Love”
by Bud Davis, 18 years old
“Maribel was a single mother with three children, one who had physical disabilities. At the beginning of the week, she was very defensive and not very open to the things we had to say. God, however, had bigger plans. As the week progressed, she began to open up more to us as God destroyed the strongholds of her life that were preventing her from accepting Christ. She explained to us that she could not become a Christian because she could not forgive her husband, for leaving her, and herself, for the things she had done in the past and present. We explained that God has forgiven all sins no matter how big or small, and that most sins do not magically go away as soon as you become a Christian; however, they can be overcome with God’s help. On Friday, after a long week of discipleship, she was ready to accept Christ’s forgiveness. It was an amazing experience because God worked through us and softened her heart, so she would come to God.”
by Joey Molina, 20 years old
“As a mission site leader, I was responsible for finding the person of peace. I had spent all week searching for him or her. There was no single person who had a lot of power or influence over the community. It wasn’t until the last day that I heard about the local town “crazy”: a bitter, old man by the name of Lourdes Rameriz, or “el loco,” who had a reputation of being anti-social, avoiding/hurting people, and chasing everyone off his property. He talked with no one and spent his time in his house. Church members previously had gone to his house to share God’s love with him, but were run off, threatened with a bat and a bucket of water. Everyone was afraid of him, so I decided to pay him a visit.
|Joey is gifted in connecting with people, showing them the love of God.|
My ministy partner from the local church was scared to go to his house, but I assured him there was nothing to be afraid of because “if God is for us, who can be against us?” As we approached the house and came within 20 yards, Lourdes saw us and told us to leave, that he didn’t want to hear whatever we had to say. So, I explained to him how I had taken three planes and one bus from the United States just to talk to him, yet he did not care. He told us to leave multiple times and displayed his annoyance. I was about to give up and walk away, but instead began to share my story from 20 yards away from the house, outside in the scorching heat. Little by little, we began to converse. We talked for two hours about a lot of things. Although he did not come to Christ, I know I planted a seed and made an impact on his life. My partner from the local church then explained that no one had ever been able to talk to him before, let alone share the Gospel with him. That was all God!