Sunday, July 25, 2010

Heaven bound

4:18 p.m. Today's project is to await my daughter Heidi's return from her missions trip to Mexico. The team left on Thursday morning to minister to the residents of Casa del Pastor ("House of the Shepherd") in San Vicente, Mexico. The home for abandoned and abused women and their children is a ministry of Calvary Chapel Moreno Valley, and the Body here financially supports a retreat for the women; sends sundries and school supplies to the families; conducts a beach trip for the children and teens; blesses the high schoolers with a retreat of their own; and provides Christmas gifts for every single mother and her children. Our women's ministry gives donations throughout the year to help meet the needs that our missionaries Lisa Heit and Jeanie Sue Phegley bring to our attention.

Heidi fell in love with the little ones a couple of years ago, when she was assigned to the 3-4 year-olds for childcare during the women's retreat. She and her friends then traveled to San Vicente to meet with and mentor a group of teenage girls who face incredible challenges trying to walk with the Lord while growing up in surroundings rife with violence and endemic poverty. The enemy has a stronghold over that country, whether it be through the ruthless drug cartels or lack of any kind of social "safety net" for families. But the people of Calvary Chapel, in prayer, giving, and going, are breaking down strongholds in the Name of Jesus! We must keep in mind what Ephesians 6:12 tells us:

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.

Put another way, for every drug addict partying (or living in the streets) in LA, there is a family of victims in Mexico: kidnapped, abandoned, beaten, or slaughtered in the streets of the border towns. Quite a price the innocent pay for some partygoer's "high!"

Into this world of spiritual darkness and satanic rule, Casa del Pastor "shines as a light in the world, holding fast the word of life..." (Philippians 2:15). The Word of God, the Lord Jesus Christ, is the only hope for the hopelessness that characterized the lives of the residents before they came to call upon His Name!

And it is no different for any of us who have come to Christ for salvation. There is only one way to walk from darkness into light, 2 Corinthians 4:6 makes clear:

It is God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

We pray safe return of Heidi and the rest of the team, and I know she'll have many a miraculous tale to tell, to God be the glory!

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