Nicaragua…. what can be said? It’s about the people, right? Or is it the place? There are many things that we can celebrate, but I’d like to take a moment to thank God. The time was far beyond expectations.
I got in country first, a few days before most of the others… Good times, as Jairo, Ulise and Joe met me upon arrival. We struck out into the ambient humidity toward Jairo’s house in Dario (1.5 hours north of the capital city of Managua), stopping by to see friends as we were in route. Somehow the stop extended into a nice dinner. Spontaneity… my favorite.
Next morning, next town and meetings of a just a few people, complete with adventures in acquiring a SIM card. Dinner with a friend from the area, after a long and colorful parade of coffee, and a torrential greeting from the Central American rainy season!
Keeping pace on the ground can be tough, as over the next two days we had four church meetings in four different cities, and not to mention grabbing team members from the airport at midnight. It’s worthwhile.
We met some new people and ministered in some new areas, and we were happy to be invited, and to meet new friends and to see those I have known since my first trip to Nica in 2006. The hospitality, as always, is the stuff of legend.
It’s a blessing when you feel called to a meeting for one person who is going to be there, whom you have never met, and you find them, and are told after the meeting that said person was crying out to God the night before to speak personally. Those things are motivating. He answered that prayer. Feeling privileged to be a part of that.
A little history, our main item on the schedule was our Young Leader’s Retreat. This is the 5th young leader’s event that I have been involved with in Nicaragua since 2010. It’s been good so far. Much to be thankful for. Nicaragua has a very young populace and we can see how it is strategic to be cultivating this ground for depth and sincerity in God. Plant a seed, mark a nation.
We went into the time pretty well prepared, with a strong team, and that’s an assurance. But the Lord trumped all ideas that we had, impacting lives, touching hearts, healing wounds, and animating our lives with His goodness. We do our part, as we should, but He does what only He can do, and this is what we depend on. Thank You LORD.
This gathering was intentionally kept small. We are hoping to go deeper into relationship, instead of broader. I think we are accomplishing this. There were 30 of us at the coast in the district of Leon. The photos look like a vacation. Don’t let that throw you. One thing we were intentional about was spiritual content, fun content, and one-on-one time sufficient to get past any facades, plus some time for reflection before the Lord Himself.
We had three days and nights of goodness from the Lord, that crescendoed in a high and celebratory tone. We look downrange for the fruit, and we are hopeful for a good crop… the farmer plants in hope.
Keep us in your prayers as we think about the future with respect to this gathering. As the leader team was discussing it toward the close our time, there was a sense of a well of grace from God, not just a drink. We want to draw deeply from His well, and to celebrate His evident goodness.
Don’t feel like you need to satisfied reading the summary… Feel free to jump into the fray…
Photo Gallery from the Trip…. Click to view Slide show or click thru to Flickr