"Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!"
"Blessed is the King of Israel!"
COME; Our Missionary Journey continues during
Holy Week (Easter) in Nicaragua.
Jesus es El Rey (Jesus is The King)
Around the world Christ's birth is celebrated in many different ways. In the United States, we learn early in life to celebrate Christmas. How Jesus was born of the virgin Mary, how he was God's greatest gift to mankind, and his only Son. However, there are some who have lost sight of the reason Christ was born.
Then, we have Easter, where we celebrate Christ's crucifixion and a Risen Savior. How thankful I am for the resurrection of Jesus, His salvation plan and the promise of eternal life with our King.
We were so blessed with the latest Mission Team that went to a very remote village some six hours into the mountains. This team lead 12 people to accept Christ as their personal Savior, they also treated over 2,500 people in the medical clinic. HALLELUJAH!!
Recently, I attended a Spanish Worship service on a Sunday evening. No matter the language spoken in this house of God, the Holy Spirit was present and understood every word. The risen Lord, was worshipped in song, praise, and the Holy Word of God. Talk about other tongues. WOW!!
Nicaraguan culture, loves to have a reason to celebrate. This is Holy Week, and the celebration is very elaborate and colorful in it's decoration of flags, and floral tributes. The city of Leon is no exception and is the place of our travel this week.
But first, the girls of Emanuel Home are out of school this week, so we treat them to a day at Granada's park and lake. Of course, what would this trip be without a boat ride to Monkey Island. For some of the girls, this was their first time on a boat. Welcome muchachas to childhood, a play day at the park with people who love you.
|Look out Granada here we come|
|Granada Park group photo|
|Monkey Island ready or not|
Semana Santo here in Nica, was a wondrous experience. I was a BIG hit in Leon, (literally speaking), I fell face first into the pavement after stepping into a hole I did not see. This is one time I can say with all honesty, I stopped traffic.
Seriously though, I was not hurt just some small cuts and abrasions. The people of Nicaragua have always impressed me and because of their caring ways it was no surprise to see so many people come running to my aid. Even the young men jumped off their motorcycles to see if I was okay, then picked me up off the street to make sure. I can't help but love the people of Nicaragua, they have embraced me as one of their own. In such a short amount of time, I have learned so much from them.
A day tour in Leon yielded much information about the indigenous people here in Nica, the slavery of the people that lasted some 300 years and the mas loss of life and culture. Many political people profited from the slaves and the poor. The poverty continues today. Their revolution for independence was hard fought and did gain much for the people.
Holy Week, truly brought out the best in so many people. I spoke with two Christian Jewish brothers, who helped me to understand the sawdust carpet pictures that were being created on a street in Leon in front of their home. After completion of the sawdust art, the Semana Santo funeral procession of Jesus death, leaves the church and they will walk over the sawdust art carpet as the bearers carry their beloved statues upon their shoulders. I also spoke with a cab driver, who told me he was a born again Christian. He played his gospel music in the cab, and had the Israel flag the star of David, flying on his dash. These were proud men of their faith. I also spoke with a man, who told me the alters in the churches face the West, so when you kneel to pray, your facing Israel in the East.
The Leon people gather in the square in the evening, where they socialize and discuss their events of the day, while children run around and play. There was a older man tried to push his wife in a wheelchair up the steep road to the square, but just couldn't make it, I went over and began helping him push the chair and then another came to help, my heart was so rewarded to see the smiles on both their faces.
You never know how God will reveal himself, these things I treasure in my heart.
|Cathedral De Leon|
|Sawdust Carpet Pictures|
|The making of the sawdust carpet pictures|
Tuesday and Thursday each week we have a small group of four young ladies. Our first meeting was a memorable one. The girls were introduced to a chocolate chip cookie recipe. Unique and special ingredients were used to create these wonderfully made cookies, just like the unique and special ingredients God used to create these young ladies and you, in his image.
The girls were afraid to use the electric mixer, and since the houses they have lived in did not have ovens, they were amazed to see cookies baked in a stove and even more amazed to eat cookies hot from the oven. What an experience they had at licking the beater blades. "PRICELESS"
Tonight's small group will be introduced to the "Banana Split". It is sweet and yummy good, but if you fail to care for the ingredients properly, the Banana Split will spoil and ruin. Christ too is good and loving, but you need to care and nurture your relationship with Jesus (read his word and pray daily). Who was it said?, " The way to a man's heart is through the stomach". God can use the stomach to reach the lost, he fed the 5,000, he can feed the four.
Special prayer request;
Time passes so swiftly, for some time now we have had a young lady here in the home, she is now 18 years old, ready to leave Emanuel Home and try her wings on her own. Our hearts are heavy with concern for her well being and safety, as well as her continued spiritual growth. Ministry Partners, prayer warriors of all denominations, please keep Maria Jose before the throne of God, pray her choices be wise and Christ centered, pray for safety and provision.
I ask also, for you to pray for a young pregnant mother, she was told at the village medical clinic the unborn baby she carried had died some weeks ago, and her body had not yet begun to miscarry. The team was able to take her to a hospital, I do not know the results, but God does. I pray He speaks to her heart and brings her comfort.
Lastly, prayer is needed for Godly wisdom in the future growth of Emanuel Home. His plan, His design, His Will. The need is great, the workers are few, but God is MIGHTY.
Our deepest appreciation to all the Mission Teams for your time spent with the girls, your devotion time and prayer, your gifts and crafts have truly been a blessing. We look forward to your return.
|Mission Team at work|
We serve a Risen Savior, this journey will continue...