Hello from Santiago, Guatemala!
After a long day of traveling, we arrived safely at our home for the week: the Posada de Santiago. David & Susie Glanville own the hotel and host us; they do a great job taking care of and feeding so many folks.
Here’s a recap of some of our activities from yesterday. We spent Thursday night at the Posada de Don Rodrigo in Antigua and spent Friday morning sharing the Gospel in Antigua. I’ve included some pictures from around our hotel in Antigua and of the students sharing the Gospel. As the students returned from sharing the Gospel, I was able to see their excitement and hear some of their stories. Walker Johnson talked about how he had a “blast” with Kara, Kaylan, and Alex sharing the Gospel with the Guatemalans. They shared the Gospel with one gentlemen, left a paper explaining the Gospel and a Bible with him, and then later (when they walked back by the gentleman) saw him still reading the materials they’d left with him. Mary Norris was encouraged by the boldness of the people in her group who didn’t speak much Spanish at all and yet initiated conversations with folks.
The students also talked to some people who were already Christians and were encouraged by those conversations as well. Chris Cole talked to a man named Juan who, along with some other Guatemala friends, had been praying for Christian materials to read but they are too poor to buy some. Chris gave him some of the copies of the Gospel of John in Spanish that we brought with us. Robert Ryan also talked to a man who wanted to start going to church but didn’t know where to go. About that time Brent Kesler walked by with a Christian Guatemalan man who he’d met who goes to a church nearby. Brent’s friend planned a time and place to meet Robert’s friend to take him to church on Sunday.
After evangelizing in Antigua and eating lunch at the hotel, we boarded the bus for a three hour ride to Panajachel and a boat ride to Santiago . A light (and occasionally moderate) rain started toward the end of the bus ride and followed us to Santiago, even when we went to bed. We were grateful the rain ceased before this morning so we could go to the work sights. The rain brought some cooler weather so it’s not quite as hot today for our work. We pray the weather is good for the rest of our time here.
Last night after dinner we gathered as a group for our worship, teaching, and Give Glory to God time. I always love worshipping here at the hotel in Santiago. The acoustics are tremendous, ahd there are 80 folks singing in one room. Jon Dansby (on guitar and vocals), Alisha Wilkerson (on vocals), Malcolm White (on guitar), and Joe Burkett (on harmonica) will be leading us this week.
Give Glory to God is an opportunity for anyone to share out loud about how they would like to praise and glorify God. They share with the whole group by completing the sentence, “I give glory to God for…”.
This week in our large group teaching time we are teaching about missions. What is it. Why do we do it. What is the Great Commission. How can and should we be involved. Michael Burr (high school staff) taught last night and laid the foundation for missions, which is the glory of God. He spoke mainly from Isaiah 6 and Hosea about who we are before God without Christ, who God is, and who we are before God with Christ.
I thought it was appropriate that Jon started our service last night (our first group meeting since we started the trip) by giving glory to God for David Phillips, our friend and high school pastor who was killed in a car accident in February. This trip is a reminder of and a testimony to Dave (who planned many mission trips over the years, including this one). He loved the glory of God. He loved the Gospel. He loved missions. He loved students. And he loved students being involved in missions. I’ll close with the words to one of Dave’s favorite hymns which also communicates what missions is really about…laboring so that many people from many tongues will forever praise the glories of our great God and King!
O for a thousand tongues to sing
My great Redeemer’s praise
The glories of my God and King
The triumphs of His grace!
My gracious Master and my God
Assist me to proclaim
To spread through all the earth abroad
The honors of Thy name.
Jesus, the name that calms my fears
That bids my sorrows cease
‘Tis music in the sinner’s ears
‘Tis life and health and peace
He breaks the power of canceled sin
He sets the prisoner free
His blood can make the foulest clean
His blood availed for me
High School Director at Christ Chapel Bible Church