Although this was my first trip to Colombia, it was my fifth to Central/South America. All have been similar with some type of construction focus.
As a technology project manager, my days are spent typing and talking, which makes the physical aspects of these mission construction projects challenging.
Our Colombia project objective was to pour a concrete footing around a new soccer field they are building at the Christian Union Sports Club in Bello and lay block on top to support a fence around the field.
We were blessed with health, safety, and productivity while we filled, mixed, hauled, rolled, and poured our hearts (and concrete) out for the ministry.
Most of the eight-man team from our church had worked with the Colombia soccer ministry before and have built relationships with the Colombia ministry workers, their families, and each other. There were a couple men I had not previously worked with that I had the opportunity to get to know better. Spending time working side-by-side with my fellow Christian brothers, sharing our testimonies, and growing our relationships is one of the great blessings of these trips. We get to know each other's struggles and how best to pray for each other which in turn helps build an overall stronger church foundation.
I started journaling the many blessings early in the week, but by Wednesday there were simply too many to count. I prayed that our love and service encouraged the ministry as much as their dedication to the ministry encouraged us. Many times the blessings were small and often overlooked. From the cook that made our meals, the lady that cleaned our room, the numerous folks that drove us around all week taking time away from their families, to our team members that did the laundry and cleaned the tables. In the end we all seemed to have simple, routine, and overlooked tasks. Yet, when assembled together as a larger team, God's team, the end result is a soccer ministry that is thriving, touching, and saving lives for His glory. At their Monday meeting, it was uplifting to see and hear the ministry staff and coaches be so reciptive to God’s Word and focused on prayer for the community. For them to dedicate their life sharing the gospel, their testimonies, and discipling the kids in their communities through the soccer clubs is the fruit of what God's team is accomplishing in Colombia. That's what God has planted on my heart, to love and serve, and when we do that obediently and joyfully, we seem to get tenfold in return.