For me, this past trip to Nicaragua was like seeing a missing puzzle piece falling into place. Nicaragua is a country to which I have deep commitments and, more importantly, a deep love. I lived and served there from 2003-2006 and have returned several times since to visit and re-connect. But no return visit has been as meaningful as this past trip has been.
Nicaragua is a unique country in the family of nations. It is my firm belief that God has a unique calling for this nation – a Great Commission calling which is only now beginning to be realized by its young leaders. As such, it is an honor and a privilege to have a part in the mentoring and discipleship of many young Nicaraguan leaders. This was the purpose of the trip – to continue to invest in Great Commission disciple-making relationships with passionate and capable young leaders.
What made this trip memorable was the level of depth I believe we achieved. Spiritual depth is something which is only achieved through relationship and it has taken us four years of hard work to get to the place where we are now with these leaders. This is the missing puzzle piece which fell into place that I referred to above. We are only now arriving at a place of trust and commitment with them which is necessary for fruitful labor in Nicaragua. These qualities are also necessary to avoid certain pitfalls to ministry which are particular to this nation. In strengthening the network of relationships created four years ago we are now poised to see some amazing things both in Nicaragua and in the nations.
The Young Leaders Retreat was, to me, a very well-balanced event. It kept a good equilibrium between worship and teaching times with games and relationship-building free times. The retreat was intentionally kept to around 20 key, hand-picked leaders whom we believed were the right people for this occasion. Also, the venue of the event, the Bigfoot Beach Hostel, was carefully chosen as to provide a chilled and relaxing atmosphere for the participants. I think each person who attended was hugely encouraged and motivated Godward. It is my prayer that the fruit from this event will be made manifest to all.The Lord has allowed us to build something meaningful and substantial among these young leaders and may we persist in His wisdom to see it through to where He wants to take it.