Have you ever been broken and not sure of what is next? Did you find yourself wondering, “What does God have for me now?” God took me on an adventure of being broken with my teammates and then bringing healing by His overwhelming love. Let me tell you about that journey.
It was the summer of 1992. Our entire team of 78 people from 6 different countries all arrived in Paris, France for preparations for our mission trip to Barcelona, Spain. We spent 3 days training and preparing for our assignments. Our team was broken down into smaller teams led by a full time missionary from one of the countries. Based on our experiences and passions we were placed on a music, mime, puppet, sports, or video team. We each had something to contribute to the team. We each were about to experience God’s training hand.
It was finally time to move to Barcelona for the mission we had come for. Olympic Evangelism. Our 15 hour bus trip was full of fun as we laughed, sang, played games, and slept together. We enjoyed the countryside full of sunflower fields and oh so beautiful.
We finally arrived at our host site, Camp Berea, on the side of the mountain, about 45 minutes outside of Barcelona. Our days were full with many activities. The best part of each day was the trip down into the city to the Olympic events or our mission locations. Sometimes we were in the outlying towns and villages and other times right there in the Olympic Village.
Some days were very challenging and others went smoothly. We all were being pressed and tried in various ways. God was using this time to build relationships as well as to make us into His masterpieces.
There is one particular day that sticks out more so than the rest. It was the day I was stuck at camp, sick. I was feeling down about not being able to go to tell others about Jesus. So, I spent time reading my Bible and a book I had brought along “The Joy of Frustrations”. I also spent some time resting and in prayer for those out witnessing.
There were a couple of us left at camp that day. As we reclined by the pool, a great sense of excitement started to build. We saw helicopters coming toward us with big buckets. What we soon discovered was that the mountain was on fire. They were coming to the pool to get water to dump on the fire because the water tanks were having trouble getting there. The fire was moving up the mountain towards us.
We began to pray for God’s safety and watched Him put out the fire. By the end of the Olympics God had broken each of us and stretched us to new levels. He broke us and put us back together to be used of Him. The one day of evangelism for our puppet team turned out to be a day of prayer for the team – those sick and those who had to return home.
God takes our messes and straightens them out. He takes the broken and overwhelms us with His love as He turns us into something new for His glory. My bell from this trip is my visual reminder of what God did on that trip. He took each of us, his children, who were being submissive to His call, broke us and grew us. We were able to support one another through some tough times.
As you look at my bell you see that it has some cracks that will always be there now. Although it is not so pretty, it does show that God puts us back together for His purpose. You can see that the cracks glued together still have gaps. That is what happens in our lives. We are broken and although we are put back together by God there are things that are still missing. Holes in our hearts and lives. But no matter what those gaps are God wants to overwhelm us with His love and does that in ways we may not know at the moment. He brings people, circumstances into our lives to grow us for His use and glory.
God took me on this mission trip to show me who He has me to be. I discovered through the things that happened that I was there to pray for the team and be a listening ear. That was the first time I was called a Prayer Warrior.
Lord, may we remember that although we go through tough times that break us, you are there picking us up and healing us with Your overwhelming love. Thank You for taking us through those things to grow us and use us for Your Glory. Thank You for showing me a part of who You have created me to be that I did not know. Being a Prayer Warrior and listening and encouraging others for You and Your Service. Help me to see Your continued calling on my life. In Jesus’ Name Amen.