Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Monday, Blessings all around!

Sometimes God speaks to us as clearly as if He came down from the sky, looked you straight in the eye and started talking. Other times it seems like He’s speaking in riddles, or not speaking at all. Since I made the decision to come on this first mission to El Salvador, the Enemy has been whispering doubts in my ear: “Has God indeed said...” you should go on this mission? (Genesis 3:3) I figured at least once I got here I would feel certain. But after 3 nights away from home, I still woke up this morning praying that I was supposed to come. Tonight I received assurance. 

Our day was spent playing, laughing, and loving the orphans and special-needs adults, at the centers we went to. Who knew a little music and some rubber band bracelets could bring so much joy? We also got to speak with one of the workers there who shared how God has been working in her life. She told us how she had worked for years at another job but was never able to get a house. When she changed jobs to work here, though, after only a couple of months, the Lord intervened and she found a house! It is so good to hear the stories of God working in the lives of those who obey Him, even on the other side of the continent!
After a full day, we came back to the mission house to prepare the food we would take to feed to the homeless. Most of the veterans of this mission describe this as the most emotionally difficult part. But for me, it gave me so much joy.

Of course, I can see how the heart-wrenching state of poverty that so many people live in can be overwhelming. But instead of focusing on the sad things, God brought my attention to the smiles, the laughter, and the sound of “¡Dios te bendiga!” (God bless you!) being proclaimed on the streets. 
As we drove, in my mind I argued against the devil’s lies and asked myself: what biblical reason can you find that tells you this is *not* something God has called you to do? All that could come to mind was 
“Inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these my Brethren, you did it unto me,” and “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature,” (Matthew 25:40 and Mark 16:15) Of course this is what God has called me to do! He calls me to this every day! 
I am blessed that this week I get to obey Him here in El Salvador, but the call is always there. God is not speaking in riddles. 
He has put it in black and white for me so that I may have no doubt.

                                                                 -Ashley Hartung

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