So Much More to be Done...

Trip Start Jun 04, 2010
Trip End Feb 08, 2011

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Where I stayed
YWAM Tijuana Del Mar

Flag of Mexico  , Baja California,
Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Things are going great here in Tijuana and we are really loving every aspect of our time ... the work, the food, the culture, the people, the ministry. It is all just so wonderful.

Thanks to some great training from a couple of very competent barristers, Samuel and I are now enjoying all the delights of being rostered on to run the little Coffee Shop here on campus. How fun! The machine is hot and running most of the time, but for the greater part it's primary use is when we have groups or teams staying. . .and there has been no shortage of them these past weeks.
This place has been totally buzzing with conferences, meetings, outreach teams and those coming to serve with Homes of Hope. We have often been overflowing with 100+ guests at a time - doubling our numbers - and running back-to-back.
Needless to say, there is never a dull moment! Hospitality is full-on, the cafes' baked-treats cabinet ever in need of replenishing, and dishes stacked mile-high.

Samuel & I had the incredible privilege of being the hosts for one of the house builds over the weekend, and fully loved every minute and aspect of the experience. It was one of those inexpressibly wonderful few days...the weather gorgeously perfect, the team seriously amazing and the work totally fulfilling.
Coming from just a few hours over the boarder, in California, we had the joy of working with a team who were in it heart and soul, with a huge desire to bless with incredible generosity.
Those on the receiving end of this Homes of Hope were a lovely Christian family who are the directors of a local Childrens Home/Orphanage - and well known throughout the entire empty-handed community for their amazing selflessness. What an honour to be able to bless them in this way.
Everyone was originally assigned into one of three working teams: Frames, trusses & painting (exterior and trim are completed before assembling).
In charge of the painting division, it was awesome to have people so willing and eager to do a great job - and to have all the children from the Orphanage and from around the community to come and join us. Paint was flying, brushes handed out in abundance and rollers never short of a task, as everyone pitched in to get the job done. Our joy and smiles grew all the more as passer-by's called out their enthusiastic encouragement and shouts of "God bless you for all you are doing!"
With everyone working hard and lending a hand, we managed to get the entire house completed before lunchtime Sunday - 10 hours later! - including furniture assembled, beds made, table set, shelves up, and clothes and toys lovingly displayed alongside a huge supply of groceries purchased for the family.
The dedication of the house was a very emotional, beautiful time as we each shared a few heart-felt lines with the family before entering the house as their first 'guests'. We crammed in like a tin of sardines and spent time praying for the family before all piling into the vans and enjoying our lunch and early afternoon together with all the children at the Orphanage. adorable!

Each Wednesday morning Samuel and I have been totally challenged and inspired with the awesome opportunity to sit in on the Perspectives classes. 
The ultimate aim of the course is to mobilize the community throughout the world in finding their niche in God's overall purpose to bless the nations ... covering key areas such as the Kingdom of God, understanding worldview, people groups, God's purpose to bless all peoples so that Christ will be served and glorified among all peoples, the Bible: a unified story of Gods purposes, etc. Great stuff.
The entirety of the course runs over the space of 15 weeks/lessons - with each week engaging a new, dynamic speaker ... though unfortunately we will only be getting the first 4 of those.

Wednesday evenings we join with a number of dedicated staff and students  to go to the downtown zone of Tijuana's red light district, Zona Norte, and minister to the prostitutes, homeless and drug addicts. Here, the darkness is tangibly thick...
The entire evening is covered in prayer as we split into two different groups. . .

One group stays at the 'park', where many homeless gather in huge numbers to hear the gospel and receive, with [predominantly] grateful eagerness, a meal of warm soup. The rest of the evening passes with us all pitching in to carefully pick up all the rubbish laying about, while talking and singing and dancing together with those who continue to hang around  --  all amidst the drugs dealt and used in abundance here. My heart aches for them all, and most especially for the occasional children seen wandering about, void of hope and lost in the darkness of this vicious cycle.

The second group of us spend those several hours walking the streets of the red light district praying. 
Any occasional opportunity is seized to talk with the men and women along the pavement ... but for the most part the latter are under the hash scrutiny of their pimps near at hand. Many of these desperate women have children trapped in this lifestyle along with them.
The black market is horrifyingly prolific here, reaching into the depths of iniquitous debauchery, and dealing right across the board from drugs to infants.
It breaks my heart to see and hear.
Our prayer and desire is to bring God's love, hope and light into such darkness - such hopelessness. There is so much more to be done.

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