Paying Attention

"Now get yourselves ready. I'm sending my Angel ahead of you to guard you in your travels, to lead you to the place that I've prepared. Pay close attention." Exodus 23:20 The Message

It wasn't the "crack of dawn" when we were ready to leave but very close to it. We had a long drive to the village of Aguacatenango and no idea what kind of drive it would be. It is safe to say I had a bit of anxiety working as we drove through the mountainous roads.

Yes, I pray, yes, I breathe deep, yes, I trust my times are in His hands and of course YES, I trust His Angel has gone before us. But somewhere between the prayer, breathing and trusting, and wishing I could hear those Angel's wings - sweat breaks out across my brow as I look down at the rocky precipice as our car hugs the unprotected shoulder to let others pass us by.

I confess, sometimes the places HE has prepared, don't look very prepared. Once we turned off the main road, the car had to creep down the craggy rutted and rocky path. We were definitely headed towards the "ends of the earth."

Due to our second day's experience of the hillside mob, we have since been prepared for any and all combinations of our program. We have games, music, crafts, stories, tricks and songs. Sometimes I feel like Bullwinkle saying, "Hey Rocky, watch me pull a rabbit out of my hat" and out pops the unexpected Rhino!

Somehow, it all works out. We connect with the children. They smile, laugh and eventually warm up to us. We share the love of Christ and we leave them with the love of Christ.

After our children's program, Sergio (our in-country leader) held a church service. They sang songs, stood and prayed and listened attentively while he shared the message. I had to confess to Vicki, the Angel may have prepared the place - but I wish he had used bug spray. My attention to the Spanish (I can pick up about every tenth word) was distracted by the swarms of unidentified creatures hovering around my wooden stool.

As much as I experience and "lean in" to here in the harvest fields, my senses still are jarred by the conditions. This small village has no running water, and electricity into the mud brick houses is achieved by running frayed wires from the interspersed poles. There are chickens with their chicks, dogs with mange, and children half naked with scabies and various other very noticeable skin afflictions.


The Angel of the Lord was here before and God prepared this place.
At the end of the service one of the older women approached Sergio and his wife Beth and said there was a man that was afraid to attend the service. He was in a house (in total darkness) towards the back of the village. He was inebriated and embarrassed. Sergio entered his house and sat and spoke with him of the Father's love, acceptance and forgiveness available to him. After some time - he did accept the free gift of salvation being offered. A light is now shining in the dark and reaching into a place in his heart where no "frayed wire" ever could.
Paying attention

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