This summer, Mission Adventures (short-term mission trips for groups; which we lead) sent teams to minister to those in Peru, Mexico, Minneapolis and the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. To show them God’s love and to let them know that they matter and belong in God’s family. One of the groups went down to Peru and this is a story about a women named Marlene told by Lyndon.
“Marlene’s story reminded me of the importance of short-term mission trips. We were in Ica, Peru when Marlene shared with me that 15 years ago her husband left her and her children. She had no money or job and was left to raie the kids by herself. She fell into deep depression and decided that she was going to commit suicide with her kids by jumping off a bridge a few blocks from her house. She started walking to the bridge and as she got there a lady started yelling at her. She told her to stop. (She didn’t know what Marlene was about to do.) She kept telling her to stop walking. Finally she caught up with her and told her “Jesus loves you.” Marlene didn’t know who Jesus was (Jesus is a common name in Latin America). She thought maybe it was a neighbor of hers or someone that she might know, until the lady explained which Jesus she was talking about. The lady led her to the Lord right there and told her that God would provide for her even though she had nothing.
The next day Marlene had no food and so she prayed, and late in the morning someone knocked on her door. It was her neighbor from down the street telling her she had some leftover food for Marlene’s family to eat.
The day after, Marlene prayed that God would provide clothing and school supplies for her children. There was another knock on her door. A neighbor had school supplies and clothing and told Marlene to take them. Marlene told her that she had no money to buy them but the lady said not to worry. “Just take them.”
God has provided for Marlene and her family for many years like this. Finally she prayed for a new house. Marlene didn’t have an adequate housing. She felt that God was telling her “He will provide”. She waited and waited and eventually a person in her church told her that someone was going to build her a house. She was like “yes I know, one day far off.” But then they said, “No. There’s a group here right now. They’re going to build you a house right now! Marlene looked and sure enough, there we were. She was so thankful it was impossible to describe.
The area where she lives is dangerous, however they leave Christians alone since they respect the power of God. They have undoubtedly seen the power of God at work in her life. Marlene has a son named Adan (Adam) who has been in and out of delinquency. Building her house was more than meeting a physical need. We were able to minister to Adan. Who has a lot of gang connections and is able to witness to gang members. We saw Adan’s heart change over the course of a week. Adan took it very hard when we left and we could see the desire in his heart to live for God. We are part of something much bigger; God wants to change the whole community through this family.”
Lyndon has been working with YWAM for over 10 years along with his wife, Shavat, and 3 children. He is the founder and leader of the Biblical Studies for Discipleship