Beauty in Carrying the Message

By Cindy Tankersley

"How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written, "How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!" Romans 10:14-15

You probably didn't expect to see a spread of beautiful flowers in a Men For Missions ACTION magazine. However, at this time of the year, there are many final preparations being made for the Feria de Las Flores (Flower Festival) in Medellín, Colombia held during the month of August.

My husband and I moved to Medellin in May this year to help receive MFM short-term teams from the United States and Canada, while working alongside the national church association, IGLEICO, helping prepare Colombians to cross their own borders as both short term and career missionaries. We are working to learn as much as we can about the country that we now call home.

Carrying a large arrangement of flowers.
The Flower Festival is an annual event in Medellin, Colombia.

As I scoured image after image of this flower festival on the Internet, I quickly came to realize that these incredibly large, bountiful floral masterpieces are actually carried by men and women known as Silleteros. (Silleteros is a Spanish word that translates to a person carrying a seat.) Dating back 200 years ago, Silleteros would carry people on a seat on their back across mountains where animals couldn't tread. If that weren't challenging enough, the sillerteros walked barefoot a minimum of three hours each way to deliver passengers

The focus of my heart quickly moved from the beauty of the load to the one carrying the beauty, and I became overwhelmed by their task and dedication. I wondered how much of a burden it was for these men and women to carry these incredible loads. The more I read, the more I learned that these men and women never consider it a burden but consider it a privilege and honor to carry these heavy, beautiful loads. It's a tradition and livelihood past down from generation to generation. It was in their joy and honor of serving that made their load so much more beautiful.

Missionaries (short and long term) have a beautiful message of truth, hope, and love to carry to the world. Many carry that message through the indescribable power of prayer. Others carry that message as they fund God's work with their finances while others are the actual feet that bring the Good News of Jesus Christ. Carrying the message can be challenging, it may take some sacrifice, and it's not an easy task but it's a privilege and honor to be entrusted with something so precious.

How are you carrying the message? There are five evangelism teams scheduled for Colombia in 2016. Will you please consider being a part of the Gospel message through your prayers, your giving, or your going? How can we help you do what God is calling you to do?

When you come to Colombia, you will see some of the most beautiful “Silleteros” in the national church association of IGLEICO, and they are not carrying flowers. They are passionate about saturating their country with the Gospel of Christ and preparing themselves to cross borders to carry God's message. Will you please come to help bring in the harvest in Medellin, Colombia?

Start Your Journey

A variety of opportunities are available to serve the Lord through involvement with Men for Missions.