I have a friend and supporter in the U.S. who just went on her first week long missions trip to another South American country. I prayed for her while she was gone and emailed her to ask her how the trip went. I asked her permission to post her response here since I think it gives good insight. I thought it might challenge some of you to go on mission trips as well. You are always welcome here.
It's so good to hear from you. The trip was really good, but hard. Having never been out of the country before and never seeing poverty like that in person took some getting used to--The dump (La Chureca) if you want to google it to see pictures, was something I'm still processing. That kids live there is surreal. But, God is doing some great things. A church service actually started in the dump on Saturdays and we had the chance to participate. Also, there is a huge endeavor going on right now- a building project. Eight group homes are being built and it's a beautiful place. They are going to take out 64 of the most at risk kids in the dump and move them here. They will go to school, and be given the opportunity for a life out of the dump. It's called Villa Esperanza and if you go to Forwardedge.org and click on the Nicaragua link it tells all about it, We toured it and what a haven it will be. The first 8 girls are scheduled to be taken out of the dump in April. There is alot of prostitution that goes on between the girls and the garbage truck drivers. In exchange for first dibs at the new garbage coming in, families offer their daughters to the men. It's pretty awful. But the kids....they were so amazing. Smiles that went on for days. Beautiful people. I had the opportunity to share my testimony with around 60-70 kids of all ages. We did sports evangelism and did teacher training for the dump teachers and an orphanage/school nearby.
Whatever romanticized thoughts I had about the mission field are much more realistic now. In my head I knew it must be "hard" but I only spent a week there and saw how tough (but great.) it can be.YOur obedience to the call into full time missions is such a testimony. WE continue to pray nightly for you all. THanks so much for asking and for praying for me.