Oh My Goodness, this week flew by!!! It was a great week here in Oaxaca!
The week was focused on one main event for my village team. Monday and Tuesday were spent advertising, planning, and preparing for a soccer tournament that we were putting on in the townhome village. In this village, we have been chipping away slowly at a brick wall. So, we were worried that the tournament would not have many kids attend. So we prayed. We prayed since we started having the idea that the Lord would bring kids and parents too, that the people would hear the Word, and that it would turn out really well.
With Wednesday here, we headed out early in the morning with the other Nehemiah village teams that we recruited for the day. We arrived at the field around 11:45 to begin setting up for the day. We had a bracket made, a new soccer ball, Maria cookies and water, and paint as well. We painted our team color war paint on, and kids began to come. A team of 11 boys entered the field, and told us that three more teams were coming as well. We were so excited, and waited for the teams to come. 12:15...12:30...12:45...we still only had enough kids for one full team and three half teams. We were beginning to wonder where all the kids were that received our 150+ flyers. We stopped, congregated the team in a circle, and prayed. I prayed that the Lord would provide and that many more would come, or that He would show us that this was it and we would just have a two team tournament. Just as the amens rung around the circle and the heads pulled up, two cars full of children drove up to the field! We were so excited!!
We lined them all up, divided into four teams, and war painted their faces for the day! They were all so full of joy and excitement for the tournament to come. The first game played, and then the second, and then the third and fourth. All of these going on while more of the team shared some bible stories and played other games, such as Duct Tape Tag. As I looked around toward the end of the third game, I began to get a little discouraged. I began to wonder if the kids were even having fun, if they were learning anything from the word, and if we would see this as a "success." So I prayed. I prayed that the kids would have a good time, I prayed that the Word would be heard, and I prayed that this would be a "success." After the championship game, we gathered everyone and shared the gospel. We shared the Creation to Church story, and shared the reason for the whole tournament. I watched as many were locked in on what was being said, and also how many were looking around and just ready for the candy at the end. My discouragement continued. At the end, however, they clapped and then went around to each one of us, shaking our hands and expressing their gratitude for a great day and for sharing that story with them.
Needless to say, the tournament was a success. Yes, at times, I began to get discouraged, but I know that those thoughts were not from the Lord. We went, we shared, and the Lord worked. But all of this was done through prayer.
"For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them." -Matthew 18:20
"And whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive, if you have faith." -Matthew 21:22
This is our last week of village work here in Oaxaca, and our last week and a half in Mexico. Please pray that we would seek out every opportunity, and leave with no regrets. Pray for boldness. Pray that we can focus here in this moment, and focus on what were are doing, not on the things at home. Pray for energy and for encouragement when we are tired or worn down. Pray for open doors and open hearts so that we can get lots of information for future work, and also open ears to the gospel. Pray for homesickness to subside. Pray also for patience and love within the team for our last couple weeks.
Thank you all for your prayers, love, and support.