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Mexico Mission Trip 2017

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Friday, July 7th 2017

Today we went to place of the lesser than less fortunate- Shantytown- a town that is built within the dump. There were no pictures taken today to mark these moments in our hearts. There will be only memories. Bringing a camera would have been disrespectful to the people who are making their livelihood there.

The temperature quickly changed from hot to hotter as we entered the valley that Shanty Town is located. It felt like a hot blow dryer was being blown in our faces. When we arrived, we passed out burritos- hot dogs wrapped in a tortilla and water bottles to the people living there. We walked from one little house made from garbage bags to another. It was a humbling experience to say the least. The valley was full of garbage. It makes you realize that everything we have and want is fleeting and will end up in a dump like this one day. This place was honestly like hell on earth. These people need Jesus so much and His love. Our hearts were truly wrecked that day. We saw things that many of us have never seen before. The shortage of water, the toilet options, and the kids with ropes to tie their jeans on to fit. It was humbling.

Saturday, July 8th 2017

Today we exited Mexico and headed across the border. It was a long hot wait. As we crossed the border, it is like exiting another world. Tijuana is a world where the needs are so great. This week we learned about the unreached people all over the world…the people who have never even had the chance to hear the gospel. Our hearts were changed to say the least. It is hard to explain to others what we have seen and experienced by seeing the heart of Jesus this week. Last night we praised Jesus, we talked about what we learned about Jesus this week and His heart for the World and how we would be putting it into practice in our lives. Our God is moving in these young men and women (and us older men and women) on the trip. Our hearts have been changed and our comfort level has been stretched. Some of us have been sick this week, but our God is so great because we had to lean on Him for everything. This team is amazing- these teens are amazing and will do so much for the kingdom of God. This week is truly a week of discovering God’s heart for the world where we hear amazing speakers from Radius and Spectrum- places that trains up missionaries and sends them out. We then put their words into action as we pour concrete, build homes, play with the kids at the orphanages, and feed the hungry.

How can you pray? Pray for our broken hearts. Our hearts are broken for the worlds and we want to share that brokenness with you. We want everyone to know that our God is so big and we are capable of so much by being willing to serve Him. This trip will shape you and you will see the world through God’s eyes. It’s scary, uncomfortable, and yes you may get sick. But God will show you so much if you lean on Him and ask Him to show you His eyes for the World.

Wednesday, July 5th 2017

What are some phrases that you hear in Mexico?

How much water have you drank?

What color is your pee?

How spicy is that- ketchup spicy or I’m dying spicy?

Go drink water.

Can you MAKE it to the bathroom?

These are just a few things that are normal conversation starters in Mexico. Today we split up and into 2 groups and built homes. Group 1B-Flu had the gift of building a house over the concrete for the orphanage- Niño’s con Fe- where we poured the cement slab on Monday as a group. Some of the kids from Ninons Con Fe were brought over to the site and we played with the parachute, stickers, and gave some of the toys that kids donated from Kids Connection. Thank you so much for your generosity this week! We have loved blessing these families. The kids even jumped in with building the house and they pounded nails and painted the house.

Group 2A- Rad built a house for Teresa and her Dad. Teresa was formally from the United States and was sent back. The build was fairly easy and the team was able to work well together and used their gifts well together. The only mishap was when Jim almost left Isaac at the build…we like to tease him about it. J

Thursday, July 6th 2017

Today we joined as 1 team and went to Niño’s Con Fe- We were able to see where the original location is for Niño’s Con Fe- we have been working on making the new location (Monday, July 3rd)- because the government is making the orphanage have more restrictions and rules. There are 18 at the orphanage. We painted together, we created necklaces, the girls from the orphanage braided our girl’s hairs, played musical chairs, baseball, and futbol, and had a sing off! The kids sang for us and then we would sing for them and we would go back and forth at least 10 times! Arien Fritts, Carmen Cruz, Aliya Fritts, Emma Brinker, Catherine Brinker, Noah Johnson, and Daniel Harms were leading the sing off on our team! They were great! Anna Jo, Julia, Christie got their hair braided by the girls. It was so much fun! Scott McCormick noticed that their fire detector wasn’t working and he and Katie Jo Whitney went to the store a few times to get the batteries for it, and after some translation issues, they figured it out and fixed it.

Niño’s Con Fe is not an orphanage in our sense. It is more like a Foster Home for these children. Their mothers are able to come and visit with them or take them home for a visit. But they are brought back to the orphanage either due to home situation or not being able to afford their children.

Jim and Ruth Brinker have such a special friendship with Gabriel- the man in charge of Niño’s Con Fe. He literally lights up when we come there. The orphanage is very small for how many kids are staying there. There are bunks across one room for the boys and another room for the girls. For the baby girls there is a home made built crib that is built from the grown and both baby girls are placed in there at night. The kids are loved so much, but it is still hard to see what they are living in.

Please continue to pray for us. It was extremely warm today and it was hard to cool off. Some of the kids are not feeling well, but mostly they are run down from the heat and the hard work. Please pray for energy, for encouragement in God’s word, and pray for us as we go to Shantytown tomorrow. This is the Dump in Tijuana and we have heard that we will see and smell things and that we have never experienced before. Pray for our hearts as we serve the lesser of the less fortunate.

Monday, July 3rd 2017

We arrived on a smooth airplane flight. After we arrived we had an adventure finding our 2 vans but once we found them, we were golden. We then split up the lists for shopping and conquered Walmart and Costco as a group. As we headed in Tijuanna, we were stopped at the border and asked to pull to the side of the road. The first thing they said was, “everyone out.” Both vans of people walked to a waiting area. Jim Brinker and Scott McCormick drove the vans over to the side and they were asked to leave the vans. After they left the vans- a giant x-ray machine went over both vans. Then they were asked Jim and Scott to drive the vans to the side and we waited. When the security officer came over; Arien Fritts and Anna Jo McCormick helped translate what she was asking. When she finally understood that we were going to Mexico to work with Caravan Ministries, we were able to go. We have never experienced this before. Thank you for your prayers with the smooth transition to Mexico.

Our mission for the day was to pour a cement floor for the orphanage. It was hard and dirty work, but our team literally rocked it by moving rocks, carrying five gallon buckets of water, shoveling sand, and pouring the cement down. Jim Brinker, Cass Shell, and Daniel Harris were machines as they ran the wheelbarrows back and forth.

Children from the Ninos con Fey (the orphanage) also came and visited us. They remembered Ruth Brinker from last year and came right to her! It was a joy to play with these kiddos and chat with them. They were very patient with our Spanish and helped us with our words. Many of our team were able to play with the kids with bubbles and coloring. Lots of laughter!

God spoke to us through Colossians 1:3-4, “We always thank God, the Father our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, because we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus, and of the love you have for all the saints.”

Tuesday, July 4, 17

Today we broke into two groups to build two homes. Group 2A- Rad and Group 1B- Flu- the only reason we have these names is that the license plates are these. We added the 1B and 2A so that neither team felt they were number 2- we are all equal in God’s eyes. J

Group 1B- Flu went to a site very close to the dorm. They built a home for Miriam and her 4 children. Anna Jo and Katie Jo played with the kids quite a bit. Her two boys Alejandro and Antonio loved Mario and kept playing like they were Mario and saying Mama Mia! Her two daughters and niece loved the toys that Cornerstone Kids donated to Mexico. Cass Shell, Daniel Harris, Christie Holman, Michael Small, Amarah Johnson, Aliya Fritts, Scott McCormick, Samuel McCormick, Marissa Streeter, and Grace Thannum built the house like pros. Once we arrived the team went to work and built the house with love, painted it, and added the roof on a very hot day. Poor Marissa has a bit of dehydration today. She is starting to feel better, please continue to pray for her and the team. The day was very hot.

Group 2A- Rad went to a site farther away. They built a house today for Maria and Edgar and their 2 year old daughter. The build went fairly quickly with the leadership of Carmen Cruz as their staff member on the team. Arien Fritts made friends with the neighbors and their kids. To communicate with the kids, Arien drew a picture in the sand to explain where she was from. It was great to watch! They played soccer and made dinner for Arien and Carmen. The team built quickly and worked well together; Jim Brinker, Ruth Brinker, Emma Brinker, Catherine Brinker, Noah Johnson, Daniel Harms, Billie Jo Bishop, Julia Bishop, Isaac Bishop, Katie Clark and Luke Harklau.

We ended our day with fantastic tacos from the Taco Man. It was fantastic! In our debrief tonight we talked about what we hold close in our life and how we can give it to God. Many of us chose our families, our time, our money, and our comforts. May we all lean into Jesus and give all life fully to Him, because it all belongs to Him.

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