What a joy it is to be back here in Guatemala with our dear brothers and sisters in Christ! It has been such a blessing to continue to serve alongside the people of Iglesia Galilea, who have become our good friends. The partnership Risen Life has with Iglesia Galilea as well as the opportunity I have had to come down here for now the third time has really allowed the truth to sink in that we are all one body as God’s people, made up of people of all nations and tongues, serving one God, and sharing the same purpose as we minister to and serve alongside each other. I no longer see it as “us” and “them,” but as simply “us.”
Today was another long day at the worksite. We had a few people continue to lay blocks up high, which is coming along beautifully. As I am more than happy to let the guys who have no fear of heights or sketchy looking scaffolding take on that task (you’re welcome mom and dad), I have been part of the team on the ground who has had the task of digging the now deep and huge hole- shoveling and hauling and leveling dirt to fill in the floor of the church. We have moved tons and tons and tons and tons of dirt. This has truly been the hardest week of physical labor I have ever had in my life, but I am thankful to get my hands dirty and be helpful in whatever ways needed, even if it means I won’t be able to use my arms for a week afterwards. It has been especially rewarding to come back and see the progress of the church building from where we left it last year, and to continue to work on building it up. We are all pretty exhausted from the work, but the team has kept on going strong, all working hard and without complaint. This team is seriously awesome! And the men of Iglesia Galilea here who continually work on this building never cease to amaze me with their servants’ hearts and their Guatemalan strength and fearlessness.
It has been a long and eventful week. We are always told in preparation for these trips to “pack our flexibility,” and thankfully we have a team that has taken this to heart this week. Almost every day there has been something unexpected that we have had to step into to serve, and each member of our team has done so gladly and willingly. God is so good, and what a blessing it is that He has brought us here for such times as these, to be used for His purposes, His glory, and others’ good. Tonight, Sean had the opportunity to assist Tono with worship at a funeral at the church. This was no light or easy task, but a huge blessing to Tono and all those involved. All that we have had the privilege of doing here this week is a great testimony to the strong and trusting relationship we have with Iglesia Galilea, who has entrusted us to assist them with many important tasks.
We appreciate all of your prayers, and ask that you continue to pray as we finish out our time here. Tomorrow is going to be a long day with construction in the morning, VBS in the afternoon, and youth group in the evening. We trust that God will provide us with the strength needed to complete the work ahead of us well and with smiles on our faces! I have been so blessed this week by the love that our Risen Life team and Iglesia Galilea has for the Lord, which is so evident by the way in which they love and serve each other and the people of Guatemala.