Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Love in any Language Fluently Spoken Here

"Love in any LanIn the 70s, my husband was Vice-President of International Faith Bible College and we were the “chosen ones” to lead a missions trip to Mexico which consisted of college students and our two young children….in a school bus. That was our introduction to missions as a family, and it would prove to be the seed that launched our family's love for missions. That first trip to Monterrey, Mexico made for a very long journey, as the bus had mechanical issues along the way, the seats were uncomfortable, and we were a weary group…..but that didn’t squelch our zeal and determination for what was before us. We were excited that we were on our way to make a difference in some precious people’s lives. We were coming with our American-style of worship, praise and ministry to help those dear people. As it turned out, we were the ones who were most blessed and impacted as we witnessed their all-out love for God and their uncomplaining attitudes as they walked for miles just to get to church to worship God. Their love wasn't based on what they could get from God. It was based on their love for the ONE Who gave His all for them.

The message is loud and clear that we are all people who love and need to be loved. Back when my kids played with the little kids in Mexico -- language was no barrier. And I saw that in the photos and reports from Payton Wallace and Alexia Wallace while on their missions trip to Guatemala last week.

We were able to be a small part of that trip because of the free "WhatsApp" technology that kept us in touch with them, despite where they were. WhatsApp is a free app you can download on your phone and wherever you may be, you can stay connected to friends and family via texting and photos. That's exactly what we were able to do with Payton and Alexia. We loved seeing the photos of the kids, along with the quick text messages. They gave skits in costumes and messages that conveyed God's love to the kids and people there. One of their text messages: "Over 300 kids just gave their lives to Christ". Another message from Payton: "I just gave the altar call and it was amazing. Almost all of them accepted Christ." Another message, another night: "The numbers for the message was 79 people showed up; 40+ accepted Christ." Overall, over 3,000 people received Christ because of a group of American kids loved enough to share their love of Christ to them.

What is it that we have in common with people regardless of language, religion and culture barriers? Love knows no bounds. Whether we're in Mexico, Guatemala, Tibet or right smack dab in the middle of our home towns, love conquers all. An arm around the shoulder of someone, a smile, a handshake, and a hug -- are all "I love you's".

I cherish and share the words of Payton and Alexia's proud Mom, Staci, today:
"As I see my kids living the legacy that was set by their grandfather and their great-grandfather, I know that the greatest gift I will ever give them is not a bank account of riches but a legacy of love and a heart for missions. Thank you, Jesus, for this precious opportunity to pour into our children and see them carry-on the greater things of life. We are about advancing the Kingdom of God and I feel so blessed in knowing that my children have fallen in love with the message of Christ and are dedicated to using their lives to making Him known."

Love in any language, straight from the heart
Pulls us all together, never apart
And once we learn to speak it, all the world will hear
Love in any language, fluently spoken here