Guatemala 2011: Big Potatoes and Other Odd Assortments

“There were what seemed to be a thousand blessings that we encountered during our trip to Guatemala – not the least of which was realizing just how great the people are that we rub shoulders with here at Word Fellowship Church!

A group consisting of 5 adults and 1 teen headed south to Guatemala to minister to, and be ministered to by, the people of Guatemala. We encountered a loving family (the Steeds, our missions partners in Guatemala) that made us feel welcome, a people in need who were strong and loving, and a country that God has blessed with overwhelming beauty. The climate was perfect, in the 70’s and 80’s every day, and everywhere we went majestic mountains were in full view.

There are many things I won’t quickly forget: Caesar ministering to our team through God’s Word, in spite of his illness and pain, God using me in a small part to lead Tomas to the Lord, and working with a godly translator, Ingrid, who is on fire for the Lord and takes every opportunity to share Christ with those who need Him.

One of the other highlights was something that I didn’t need to leave New Jersey to discover – that WFC is a special place with special people. We had many people praying that we would be bold and that there would be a hedge of protection around us. All the team members played an integral part and it was obvious that they are true servants with extremely sensitive hearts. Whoever said that real men don’t cry has never been on a mission trip, experiencing the poverty, need and beauty of those people whom others have forgotten.

The women team members opened up their hearts to the women of Guatemala, sharing their stories and Knifty Knitters with them. They displayed God’s love through many hugs, and shared kind words through our awesome interpretor, Ingrid. The men got the opportunity to build stoves, move block, move and re-move dirt many times, and swing machetes.

Some of us also got the opportunity to zip line about 600 feet or more above the ground, which is where Big Potatoes comes from. One of our guides was concerned about how fast one of the other mission team members, Jeff, and I would go on the zip line because of our size. When he was radioing over to the other side, he referred to Jeff as Papas Grandes – Spanish for Big Potatoes. We cracked up about that!

We were deeply touched by the kindness of the people. Some moments were truly awe-inspiring, while others were gut-wrenching, but I can honestly say I have never laughed more in one week than I did during our time in Guatemala. We had so much fun being together and were quick to involve Chris, Holly and the boys in our laughter.

I guess, in short, that Guatemala was wonderful and if God allows, I will go back. But I also know that I will enjoy the great people who go to WFC. Sometimes I take for granted the great Pastor we have, the intimacy and enjoyment we have at Small Group, the blast I have working with the Senior High Youth Group and the special time of worship that we have on Sundays.

I encourage anyone that can, to take a mission trip and see what God has in store for you. But more importantly, I remind us all that we don’t have to go thousands of miles away to appreciate what a special family we have right here at WFC – Big Potatoes and all!”

-“Guatemala 2011: Big Potatoes and Other Odd Assortments” by Mike, 08/11

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