Wednesday Morning, 5:00 AM
– Good morning from Guatemala. Here we are at the start of the last day here. The work may be officially done and the homes and medical clinics complete but this journey is not over yet.
– Yesterday was an incredible day for the team. I saw God working and moving time after time in the members of our team and in the lives of the people in the village. This village has been so welcoming to us and has given this team a gift of friendship and love. They have shown their gratitude in so many ways. As the homes were given along with all the gifts, the hugs that this team received will never be forgotten for as long as each of us live.
– As each home was prayed over and each person given a chance to share -I witnessed moment after moment of God pouring down blessings on this team. Many of the people asked Christ into their heart or rededicated their lives to Him yesterday. The stories of yesterday will best be shared by the team as they share from their perspective what God did.
– Even though this team is almost done, God is in no way done with this team. One of the biggest reasons we are here this week is yet to be realized. Already there have been many individuals sharing in our group devotions of the breaking that God is doing here. He is breaking down the walls and barriers that each of us have built up that Keep Him from having the front seat of our lives.
~ Walls like the masks that we wear so others can’t see the pain and brokeness in our lives.
~ Walls of fears that keep us from following Christ and giving Him our all.
~ Walls of sin that separate us from God’s Blessing and Joy.
~ Walls of hurts in our past.
~ Walls of wrong priorities.
~ Walls of missed opportunities.
~ Walls of hardened hearts.
~ Walls of selfishness.
When He breaks down these walls there is a great Joy that He replaces them with as we are able to draw nearer to Him.
– The tandem Bike has become the image this week of defining where God sits on the Bike of our lives. Most here have asked Christ to join them in their Bike ride but He sits in the back seat helping them pedal. There are some here that may not have ever truly asked Christ to join them. Most of us here are in that place where we are struggling with giving over the front seat, the controls of our life. This is probably the scariest thing we can do as followers of Christ. Go where he wants us to go and trust that he will not crash the bike.
– Yesterday in the village after the homes were dedicated and we were waiting to leave -I went for a walk in the bean field next to the village we were working. The beans were maybe a foot high or so. The field was beautifully cultivated and well kept. As I walked I noticed some orange colored things laying in the path that looked like small pieces of candy. As I took a closer look I saw that they were seeds that had never started to grow. They were laying on the path looking no different than the day they had been sown.
– These seeds have stuck in my mind since I saw them. In each seed lies the potential for life. Life of a new plant that can when it is mature can create new seeds each with the potential to create another plant that bears more seeds. If you think about it, how sad that the seeds that I saw yesterday will never realize the potential they have. What a waste. They will never fulfill the purpose that they exist unless something happens to them. Unless they die as a seed and disappear into the ground and take on the appearance of a new plant, they will never be able to bear the fruit for which they were created.
– Last night in our group devos I shared a verse from John 12:24. Here Jesus says these words, “I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat falls to ground and dies. It remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds. The man who loves his life will lose it, while the man who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. whoever serves me must follow me.”
– There it is. There’s the secret to bearing fruit. Fruit for eternity. Fruit that will bring everlasting Joy. Fruit that will satisfy the search we all have for meaning and contentment in this life.
– In each of us God has given the seed of salvation. Unless we die to ourselves and put Christ in the front seat of our lives, we will only remain where we are. Stuck in a place that we will never realize our full potential. Christ calls us to die in this world so that others may live in eternity.
– That is where most of us find our self today. We have been scattered in this world but we don’t want to let ourselves disappear and take root in Christ. We are afraid to let go of our selves; our desires, the things we want to do, the places we want to go, the people we want to be with, the time we have and the things we own.
– But there it is. There is no arguing that for a seed to produce new life it must give up itself. That is what Christ is calling us to do here in Guatemala today. To give it all up and put Jesus in the front seat. And when that happens, watch out. New life will spring from the ground. Sure it takes time for the new seeds to form but with the water and nutrients of God’s word and the Holy Spirit in time a crop of seeds will come from our lives. Seeds that can bear eternal fruit.
– Tonight this is the call that God is going to make in our lives. A call to die to Him and leave everything at the cross. Tonight God has business to do in us. He has been preparing us this week to let go and trust Him when we get back home.
– This is the last post I will be able to write until I get home. Please pray for us today as we see this journey to its end. Pray that the walls will fall and that seeds will be planted in the ground and that fruit will come from this journey to Guatemala.
– having you here with us has been a blessing. Your prayers have lifted us and carried us this whole week. On behalf of Team Hillcrest -I want to thank you. I also pray that through being here with us that Christ might have been working in your life as well. Wouldn’t it be awesome if we could go home and not only have you notice the work that God did us in Guatemala but that we could also notice the work that Christ has done in you, as you have prayed and walked along with us.
– On July 13 the team will be sharing their stories of how God impacted them in Guatemala at the 9:30AM service at Hillcrest. I invite you to join us as we sing and worship with songs that have broken our hearts here and with stories of God breaking down walls and planting new seeds. We will also be putting together a slide show of the trip and working on a news letter in which each person on this team will be sharing how God impacted them this week. I invite you to join us and continue to see how God moved in this humble team here in Guatemala.
– Thanks from the bottom of our hearts for joining with us. May God bless you .
– In His Grip,