This will be the craziest summer we’ve ever seen…and it has arrived.
This past week we’ve been preparing for a mission trip! Do missionaries do that?!? Of course! This summer mission trip won’t be in the traditional pattern of believers from the USA coming to Mexico but rather the opposite. As missionaries in Mexico we’ll be ministering in the USA to a group of about 40 American kids who will be attending a Christian camp in western Iowa next week. The camp was founded years ago and is still directed by a couple who were Bethie’s teachers way back in high school. They’re also involved as ministry partners in our ministry. We wanted to return the blessing they are to us by being the “missionaries of the week” at their camp.
The group of kids are ages 10 to 14 and we’re praying that God uses His Word and our messages to touch their hearts. These kids are at an age when it’s important to begin instilling the Great Commission into their thinking and their hearts. They are not too young. Most believers who become missionaries as adults were thinking about it from very early on. I’m sure that’s true. On our ministry team here with CAM, 7 out of 7 of my co-workers grew up with missions in their developing worldview. They are all MKs.
When we originally came up with this idea last summer, we thought we’d be driving up to Dallas to pick up school curriculum for our next school year and that a trip to Iowa from there would not be a huge stretch. Unfortunately, we did not foresee the possibility of taking an interim home assignment trip out West. This made me re-think the logistics. Add to that the ongoing safety issues in northern Mexico and the realization that we’d end up driving 8 days for a 4 day camp, and I came to the conclusion that we should explore alternatives.
I finally decided it would cost about the same for Beth and me to fly up and leave the boys here with Grandma. That plan came together surprisingly well and we’re set to leave tomorrow morning. We’ll bus it to the airport in Mexico City and then fly to Chicago (it was a lot cheaper). Flying to Chicago will allow us to spend a day together without the kids. We’ll call it our anniversary celebration. Our 19th anniversary is August 3 but we’ll be in the middle of work team here. And when do we ever get a chance to do anything without the kids?!? It’s pretty rare. We’ve never left them like this for this length of time and we’ve never both been out of the country without the kids. It should all go well but it is an unusual experience.
We plan to use the “L” and buses to visit a museum and take in a Chicago pizza (yummy!). Should be fun! We’ll be driving out to Iowa on Sunday and the camp runs Monday through Thursday. Beth has a tooth that needs some emergency work (probably a crown) and after failing to find a dentist here that we trust (there are “horror stories” from each dentist we’ve had recommended to us), our hosts’ dentist said that he could see her on Wednesday afternoon! What a blessing! It won’t be free or even at a reduced price but it will be worth it to have this serious problem addressed by a competent dentist.
We’ll head back to Chicagoland on Friday (week from today) and spend 2 days with Beth’s sister and brother-in-law and their four children, in Chesterton, IN. Monday the 21st we’ll head back to Chicago and stay near the airport for a morning departure to return home on the 22nd.
We’d appreciate your prayers for our travel and for the many interactions with the kids we’ll be meeting next week. Some of them are not yet believers so the audience will be mixed, but I’ll be challenging them in many directions and it would be awesome to see some kids make decisions to receive Christ and some kids who have already received Christ to be moved to consider serving the Lord as missionaries as they continue in their young journey with Jesus. Would you pray for these requests? Thank-you!
I don’t know that I’ll be able to post much if at all for over a week but if I get some time and an Internet connection, I will try. We’re excited to be serving our Lord and many others during the next two weeks.
I’ll be sharing under the following message titles:
Missions Monday – There Is a Place (an introduction into our ministry and to Mexico)
Missions Tuesday – There Is a Time (Acts 8 and Divine Appointments)
Missions Wednesday – There Is a Need (various passages and a look into the religion of the lost)
Missions Thursday – There Is a Cost (various passages and counting the cost of following Christ)
I’ll be using Powerpoint and the kids will see and hearing a lot of important images and sounds to illustrate the different themes and points. Above all, God’s Word is powerful beyond anything I can say. May God be glorified.