Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Prayer Retreat

Recently we had the opportunity to take a trip to Puebla for a prayer retreat with some of our colleagues who also work with indigenous people in Mexico. To get an idea of geography, we live close to the Guatemala border and Puebla is about a 10 hour trip by car. It's a beautiful drive, taking us from humid, chilly San Cristobal, through sweltering Veracruz, and then up to chilly, dry Puebla. You can imagine dressing 4 kids for the cool morning, then stopping for lunch and stripping off the long sleeves while they "complain" about how hot it is! And then, at dinner time, you stop again and have to bundle back up.

Our time in Puebla was enjoyable. When we first got to Mexico in January, we spent a week or two in Puebla, so it was a familiar place to be. The prayer retreat was near a lake at a Christian retreat center. It was a blessing to us in so many ways.

Ellie loves to swing, especially with her new friend!

First, we got to meet many of our colleagues face to face. Until this time, we were facebook friends with many of them, or had skyped once. But now we can put a personality with that face. And there were kids everywhere! And they spoke English! (Yes, that made my kids happy.)

Second, of course the time of prayer and reflection was a blessing. Sometimes we get so busy "doing" that we don't stop and spend time in directed prayer. It was a great reminder to me that the battle is fought on my knees.

One of Ellie's new outfits! Isn't it adorable?
Third it was a blessing to hear the testimonies of the other missionaries and the work they are doing among the indigenous. Although geographically we are far away, we are not alone. We have a network of laborers who can offer wisdom, advice, encouragement, and prayer.

Fourth, we were blessed by a team of volunteers from Tennessee who came to serve us. They left their families during Thanksgiving week to serve in Mexico! They provided childcare and led our devotions and worship. They also brought suitcases full of goodies that we can't get here. And a new outfit or two for the kids!

Another favorite of mine was the beautiful flowers this time of year in Puebla. Did you know that pointsettia flowers actually grow to be a tree in the right climate?

Pointsettia tree

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