Mud was still dropping from our trucks as we pulled into Eiley’s folks’ driveway at noon on Thanksgiving Day. Most of us hadn’t showered in a week; many hadn’t slept well in as long. Some were recovering from colds while others were trying to fight them off. The lure of a hot shower, the enticement of a Jacuzzi, the promise of a bountiful Thanksgiving dinner beckoned us out of the wind, rain, dirt, and poverty of the hills east of Tijuana.
The contrast was poignant, and I wondered if we would feast into oblivion all that God had done in us over the past week. iPods and cell phones came out; football games were tuned in on the High Definition TV; kids lost themselves on Grandpa’s computer and the Wii.
The return was too easy for me, too. My computer came out as I began transferring 1,200 pictures from camera to laptop. Then I noticed a simple e-mail from my Mom: “We do not learn from experience. We learn from reflecting upon experience.” And surrounded by the aromas of turkey and stuffing and a table full of desserts, I reflected on what God had done in us and through us….
  • A family that two weeks before leaving was ready to quit had heard God ask, “Do you trust me?” – and two days into Mexico they were planning for the next trip!
  • A 10-year-old realizing that the campfires and tents that kept us relatively warm and dry were more than many families had in the communities we saw.
  • A high school student gaining a sense of God’s purpose and direction for his life.
  • A college student recognizing God’s transforming work in her own life – and being moved to pray for the same for her family.
  • A family – from 77-year-old grandpa to 1-year-old baby – has a new, warm, dry house to call home.
Even as I write this, tears of gratitude are welling up. My prayers – your prayers – were answered beyond all we could have asked or imagined!

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