Commonway in Nicaragua
Days 3 & 4
Day 3 (cont.) – Sponsored Children
The highlight of the trip, for most, is getting to spend some time with their sponsored child. It’s remarkable how quickly a bond forms. It’s almost as if this child, who until that moment was a face and a name, instantly becomes a part of your family. Kelli Bales is with us, and she had that experience today with Giselle. At the moment they met, both of their faces lit up. Kelli spent the next 30 minutes with Giselle and her family, talking, sharing, and crying at times. It’s a special moment that defies explanation outside of the work of the Holy Spirit.
Day 4 – Prayer Walking
This morning, we drove to a community called Manchones Abajo. We split into two groups and visited a number of homes. In Nicaragua, there are homes that would remind you of your life in the states, and there are homes were families are living in complete poverty. Those are the types of homes we visited today. In response, you’re brain goes into these mental gymnastics – How can I help? How can anyone live this way? What could I possibly offer in this moment? Then, we listen as they begin to share their prayer requests, and for a moment, it almost becomes overwhelming. Who am I? What do I have to offer? But then, we pray, and the presence of God shows up. We pray for God’s blessing and provision. We pray for healing. We pray for their families, their children. Together, across the language barrier, we are united in a common faith and hope.
After lunch, we spent a few hours with the kids in Manchones Abajo. The church here is a small, one room building with gray brick walls. At the front of the building, the entrance is a pair of wooden doors flanked by a window on each side. For seating, the church has those stackable, white plastic chairs. The kids arrived, sat down, and we told some stories about Jesus (along with the help of our translator Walter). We told stories like the one about the five loaves and two fish or the one where Jesus welcomes the children after the disciples turn them away. As we began, the room was full of kids, but as we continued, more and more people gathered – mothers with babies, grandmothers, and even some teenagers. They were standing around the doorway and crowded at the windows. We’re a bunch of foreigners, and I’m sure that caused some curiosity. But still, there’s something about the stories of Jesus that are irresistible. In the moment, we got a small glimpse of what it was like with Jesus, people drawn in to His love and His goodness.