As we begin a new year, we are excited about how God is at work in Guatemala. At RHI, we have three words that help us define what we do and how we serve those around us.
Restore - Redeem - Release
As we begin our third year, we are asking the question, “What does it mean to Release a family?” Does it mean we stop working with them, we stop bringing nutritional supplements? Do you stop serving those in need? How do you know when to transition into a new or different phase of ministry? What does it look like?
Maria sharing about how God has changed her life.
Yesterday, we had the opportunity to begin the shifting of gears into Release. Several months ago, my friend Maria shared with me a dream that she felt the Lord had given her three years ago. She has been burdened for the men who work in the river of Panajachel, sifting rock and sand that they sell for construction work. She knows that many of them have hard lives. They work hard and they live hard. So many have little or no education, complicated family situations and little church or faith influence. Alcohol and substance abuse is rampant. She sees their need for a Savior, but also their need for someone to care.
One gigantic pot of Chicken Pepian - delish!
Neighbors serving neighbors.
I told Maria that I want to help her pursue God’s dream for reaching out to the hurting people around her. I asked, "How can I help you reach out to your community?" That’s when I realized, this is the Release phase - partnering with families as they serve other families they see in need of God’s restoration and redemption. Maria and her family can be much more effective in reaching her community than I can. She has the dream; the Lord has given us a few resources with which to remove an obstacle. We can multiply the kingdom work, if we work together.
Rice w/veggies, chicken pepian and tomalitos.
I know this journey to Release families is like Restore and Redeem - it’s not linear, it’s messy, it’s forward and backward. It’s unique to each family, not cookie cutter. But isn’t that true of every one of our our own faith journeys - we all take steps forward, steps back. We all have seasons when we need to be served by the body of Christ and seasons when we look beyond ourselves to serve others. That’s the process of being transformed. We are all being Restored, Redeemed and Released.