Our DTS and SOMD teams returned this week from their outreach locations. Here’s Cassidy’s story from Nicaragua:
We pulled into the parking lot, piled out of our van, and looked around for the church. All we saw was a shelter made of poles and palm branches, like something you would find at a park. And that was the church. No walls, no rooms, no pews, no bathrooms – but that isn’t what makes a church anyways.
All week we partnered with this church, visiting people in their homes in the mornings, doing kids’ programs and adult Bible studies in the afternoons. And something beautiful happened as we came to this place and let God’s love flow through us: our hearts bonded with the beautiful people that make up this church, and we grew to love them.
At the end of the week we gathered for a Saturday evening service. So many people that we’d befriended in the community came that there weren’t enough chairs for everyone to sit down.
But since there were no walls, we all still fit.
This church doesn’t have walls because it doesn’t need them.
As we were worshiping together, God showed me that this church doesn’t have walls because it doesn’t need them. God doesn’t stay inside a church building. He meets with his people there, and then he goes home with them. Church isn’t a building, it is the family that comes together in a building. And there aren’t any walls because everyone is welcome.
Our goodbyes after the service lasted over an hour and included lots of hugs and tears.
This is ministry. This is missions. This is what makes everything worth it. This is God’s heart for the church.
This is love.