Psalm 141:5a “Let the righteous smite me; it shall be a kindness: and let him reprove me; it shall be excellent oil…” The Psalmist David probably said it best on my behalf today. I am humbled by the commitment of those that serve in a foreign country. To see the people of God serve and leave the comforts of home is always a humbling and convicting thought.
My tiny globe trek has brought me now to the country of Costa Rica. Dale Briley and Ed Bordell are two of many Baptist missionaries who serve in this beautiful country. Dale Briley and his son, John met me at the airport and brought me to the residence where the group is staying for three nights. The group is staying on the premises owned and operated by the organization YWAM, Youth With A Mission. This is an international group with many locations that hosts young people from all over the world. The short term stay with this organization is generally comprised of teaching, discipleship, humanitarian work, and a desire to immerse young people in the work of missions abroad.
I woke up this morning at 3:00 AM local time. Not a pleasant nights rest considering you are housed in a room with about twenty other guys. Aside from the stench of teenage body odor, Daniel Brown, the youth pastor, stepped on dog poop. Unfortunately for me, he left the stain and odor alongside my bunk. I did manage to get it picked up, but I was not able to do anything about the smell.
The agenda for the day was to assist missionary, Dale Briley in distributing Gospel tracts in what is considered to be a poor part of town. I thoroughly enjoyed the time spent with Nick, Larry, Tanner, John, and Dale Briley. We trekked through some of the roughest neighborhoods of San Jose. Many of the people that lived in this particular neighborhood immigrated from Nicaragua Many live in tin houses (shacks) along the rivers edge. The church has been continuing a month long effort to reach the entire city of San Jose through this effort. They have seen some good results with many converts as well as a boost in their attendance.
As a counselor, one of my favorite parts of this particular trip was seeing our teenagers begin to have a burden and a heart for God’s people all around the world. It was such a neat experience as we went into the public schools to share the Gospel. Many sang, perform magic tricks, and skits, while others helped by maintaining control of the crowd. At the end of every assembly, we always took time to give the Gospel. It was a moving experience as you see the hands that were raised to receive and trust Christ!