"After this the Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them two by two ahead of him to every town and place where he was about to go. He told them 'The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field. Go! I am sending you out like lambs among wolves. Do not take a purse or bag or sandals; and do not great anyone on the road.'" Luke 10:1-4
So we met this guy in Guatemala named Jeremiah. He was from a neighboring district, extended to our team as a gifted interpreter familiar with the local Mayan dialect. He had with him two traveling companions. They were his disciples...his students; the three men traveled together as Jeremiah taught by example how be an effective evangelist. These young men are enrolled in their districts course of study program; they are learning and training to be on district pastors and evangelists These men were busy from sun up until way past dark. In the school, at the church work site, and at the evening services. Jeremiah would show them different ways to present the gospel; how to recognize someone in the crowd at a spiritual crossroads; how to gauge a person's readiness to make a lifetime commitment to grace; how to pray the sinners prayer; how to do follow up at the next encounter; how to introduce a new believer into the Christian fellowship. And thru it all there was a palatable sense of the love they have for God and for the pre-Christian.
These young students were put into all kinds of on the spot ministry. In the schools we acted out various stories in the Bible. You're gonna be David. When we tell you to, throw this hacky sack at that boys face because he is Goliath and you are gonna kill him - go! You're gonna be the Samaritan and the guys the beat up the Samaritan. You're gonna let this kid put you on his back (because he is the donkey) and he is gonna give you a ride out of the school room - go! (The school children literally fell down in laughter at that point in the story) Here are evangicubes go work this part of the crowd. Here as a gospel soccer ball, go strike up a game and talk about Jesus. One afternoon they used the puppets that had been provided and preformed a real time puppet skit in the local dialect that connected the story of Noah to the salvation that Jesus provides. They never sought attention or praise.
The teacher would teach. The students would listen and watch. Next the students would do what they had witnessed and finally they would report back how it had gone. At some point you have to let baby pastors preach and baby evangelists evangelize - was how it was explained to me. They came in quietly, did whatever was necessary with grace and a smile and then as quietly and quickly as they came, they were gone. On to the next place, ready to serve in what ever way was needed. Ready to teach, ready to learn and ready to harvest.
I had one really fun conversation with Jeremiah. Simone our interrupter had mentioned to him that I am also taking classes. Jeremiah and his students smiled, nodded and chuckled between themselves. Jeremiah then extended an invitation to me to come back when my schooling was done - they need passionate Christians in this area. I smiled...I am a one language girl. He smiled back and conveyed that while Spanish is though and backwards, grammatically the Mayan dialect that he speaks is very similar to English...it would be EASY for me to master! More big smiles from the three of them and Simone. Hum...then it should be easy for the three of you to learn English when you are done with your work here...and your sisters and brothers in the Quad Cities would LOVE to welcome you with open arms! Smiles and laughs all around.
The harvest is plentiful. In Frey and in my home town too. The workers are few. I know lots of Christians, but how many of us are willing to work for the harvest? There are hurting, lost and broken people all around me. They are my next door neighbors, my workmates, my classmates, the mom of my kids friend on the soccer team.
So I guess what God is saying to me today is this:
ARE YOU WILLING TO LET HARVEST ROT IN THE FIELD BECAUSE YOU'RE TOO BUSY, TOO TIRED OR TOO COMFORTABLE?
ARE YOU WILLING TO GO - EVEN IF ITS JUST NEXT DOOR, OR ACROSS THE AISLE.
ARE YOU READY TO ROLL YET MY DAUGHTER?