"As soon as you get off the plane and step foot foot in El Salvador you are in our church and I am your Pastor", "if you say "Ola" to someone, you are doing the Lord's work in this country". These were a few of the opening remarks of an inspirational talk given by the local Pastor of the church we attend here in San Vicente. It was helpful to hear these words because my skills as a builder pale in comparison to the local talent. He thanked us for coming, which is a familiar theme here, but he was thanking God and giving the glory to God which is where it belongs.
The passion that the local church has for bringing the people of El Salvador closer to God was evident in the way he spoke. It was mentioned a few times that there are people who open doors, and there are people who go through doors. The church here believes that us Canadians open many doors for the people in El Salvador. Not just the people who come down on the trips but also those back home who are supporting these trips and praying for the people in this country. This week here is almost over and soon we will be back in Canada. The good news is that there are people in the local church who will be continuing our work with the families and the communities who received houses. They will be "going through doors" and sharing with these families the love of Jesus Christ.
One specific prayer request was given to us and I wanted to pass that along to all those reading this blog. We need to continually pray that more community missionaries will be raised up to work with these families. As we drive on the highways towards the build sites you can see so many Shelter houses that have been built (over 2400) and more people are needed to reach out and provide support to these families. It has been very encouraging this trip that God has shown us how He has been working in the lives of the people in El Salvador who have received houses or are involved with Shelter. These people are not just getting by,many of them are thriving, they are using the gifts that God gave them to help others. I first came to El Salvador in 2013 and the work that God has done in just the 4 years that I have been involved has been incredible.
We were left with a challenge at the end of the Pastor's message, this trip has changed us and we need to apply what God has taught us in our communities at home. We need to take these stories home with us and share with our friends, families and co-workers.