Monday, August 18, 2008

Misión Ohio- Part 3

From one extreme to another-

Imagine running around a camp til 9:30 at night with over 100 overly active kids then waking up early the next morning to minister with men and women over the age of 100. This is precisely what the mission team was faced with. Talk about a change of pace.
We went to minister with the residents and staff of a nursing home about 15 minutes away from the church. We helped get the residents prepared for lunch and helped serve them food. After lunch, we were able to encourage them and share the love of Jesus with them on a one-to-one basis through conversation. We were able to share our testimonies and share the Gospel with many people there.

My eyes teared up as I watched a man in his 90s, sitting in a wheelchair, pray with one of our missionaries to accept Christ. What an awesome sight it was! It doesn't matter how old you are when you accept the truth of Jesus and choose to start a relationship with Him-- the only thing that matters is that you do!

The woman sitting down is 104 years young!

After leaving the nursing home, our next area of ministry was a prison. We traveled about an hour away to a prison for young men, ages 12-21. For security reasons, only men were permitted to lead parts of our chapel service (with the exception of the few girls in the drama that was performed). Due to security reasons, no cameras were permitted. Sorry.

Our worship team lead worship. This was followed by a few testimonies, the drama, and a message from the pastor. While the men participated in the activities, the women sat in back, participating in prayer.

Overall, the young men were well behaved. However, I knew we were looking at people who did not think, act, or feel the same way as our team members did. When the drama was performed, there is a part when the main girl is dancing with God, only to have "the new boyfriend" interrupt and shove God out of the way. With the many times this drama has been performed, this was the first time I have ever seen a group applaud that God got pushed away by the new boyfriend. Two of the young men even stood up to clap at that part. I prayed that they would stay focused til the end and that they would understand the truth that we were trying to teach them- that it is the evil in the world that tries to push God away, but God desires to be with us and has given everything so that we can be with Him. I prayed that the blinders would come off so they could see and understand the truth.

At the end of the message from the pastor, he invited them to accept Christ as their Savior. When asked, every one of the young men raised their hands, including some who looked around first to see who had their hands raised. While I do not believe every one of those young men accepted Christ that day, I do believe that seeds were planted and that there may have been some who truly accepted Christ. I know that God knows their hearts. He knows who truly prayed that prayer to give their life over to Him that evening in the prison gymnasium. I look forward to meeting those men in Heaven someday and hearing how God touched their lives through a group of ordinary people from Venezuela doing an extraordinary work in Ohio.

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