All posts tagged: Nicaragua

Have You Experienced the Living Water in Your Life?

I had the privilege of going on this year’s summer mission trip to Nicaragua.  It was my first time to that country, but not my first trip to a Hispanic country as Karen and I were missionaries in Mexico for five years.  Going into the trip, I felt like I had a pretty good understanding of the culture.  I learned there was a lot I didn’t understand.  For example, in Mexico, most everyone has access to clean affordable water.  In Nicaragua, this isn’t always the case. One of the projects we got to work on was installing a water tower at a family’s house.  The family had been using large drums and buckets to store water for drinking, cleaning, and bathing.  As I spoke with the mother, it became clear they may have lacked water at times, but there was no lack of living water, as Jesus refers to when he meets the woman at the well in John 4. She kept telling me her “testimonio” as she called it, which means testimony.  She nearly …

Our Family on Mission in Nicaragua and at Home

Why do people who go on short-term mission trips love them so much? Is it the exotic destination?  Is it the time away from their own life?  Is it time spent in a different, fascinating culture? Some would think so and they would be right to some extent. These are really enjoyable aspects of traveling. After going on and leading numerous trips over the past several years I believe the reason most people enjoy mission trips (and keep going back) is because they put their faith into action and see it work. On mission trips, we live out our Christianity in a way that resembles how Christian community in the first century church was modeled. We spend every moment of a week living in community, doing projects together, praying together, eating together, sharing our resources, encouraging one another, sharing the word of God with non-believers, and doing extreme acts of generosity for people we don’t know. I’ve never had a mission trip ruined by adversity.  We’ve had flat tires, wrecked vehicles, torrential downpours, illnesses, hospital trips, emergency room trips, …

My Summer in Nicaragua

I am super excited to be back with my church family and would like to share with you about my time in Nicaragua this summer.  In June, we took 40 people to Los Cedros, Nicaragua for a week long mission trip.  This has been our largest group to date!  When the group left, my two boys and I stayed for an additional 5.5 weeks.  Kari, my wife, came back with the big group to keep our foster kids and then rejoined us after 4 weeks. We had an amazing time of ministry beginning with the group trip and then assisting the Mustard Seed Mission with several other church trips.  The SoHills team helped the locals build a pavilion at one of the schools that will enable the missionaries, Michael and Lisa Perkins, to have more influence in the children’s lives.  This new facility will also allow parents and community leaders to have meetings in a neutral area as well as serve as a base of operations for future trips.   Later in the summer, we helped another church build a home for a mother in need. These building projects are beneficial in …

Fusion Summer

I just wanted to take a moment to share an update about the Fusion Student Ministry here at Southern Hills. Over the past year, we experienced tremendous growth and started off the summer with 90 students coming to our Wednesday night service.  Last summer we averaged around 30 students!  Praise God!  There have been a lot of new faces each week and with that comes a lot of interesting stories. It has been awesome watching our students grow, taking steps in their faith and moving into roles of service and leadership.  Of the 40 people who participated in the mission trip to Nicaragua,12 were high schoolers.  For many, it was their first time out of the country and for one student, it was his first time on a plane.  During the week, we built a shelter at the local school to give the kids a place to escape the sun and rain. The SoHills teens also ministered to the local teens, talking with them about peer pressure and other things with which teens struggle, despite in what country they live. Each student had …

My Bald-Headed Friend

I love the strange stories and crazy people that God uses in the Bible.  As I mentioned Sunday, Elisha apparently was a quick-tempered, bald-headed, old dude that wasn’t really a “kid person,” but God was able to see through that and use him anyway. (2 Kings 2)  I love that about Jesus;  he’s so patient with me and my shortcomings.  As a matter of fact, Paul says he actually seems to prefer to use people like Elisha, Peter, and even myself.  That way, the only person that can boast is Christ. Remember, dear brothers and sisters, that few of you were wise in the world’s eyes or powerful or wealthy when God called you. Instead, God chose things the world considers foolish in order to shame those who think they are wise. And he chose things that are powerless to shame those who are powerful. God chose things despised by the world, things counted as nothing at all, and used them to bring to nothing what the world considers important. As a result, no one …