God has lead us to serve along side with 6:8 Ministries here in Alajuelita, Costa Rica. The community of Alajuelita is very large and also is the poorest county, per capita, in all of Costa Rica. Alcoholism, drug abuse, and prostitution are just some of the major problems here. And of course, with these major problems come the side effects of: broken homes, homelessness, hate, fear, and unworthiness.
From the moment we arrived here, Amanda and I felt a strong connection with the people who would come to the feeding center. Roughly 70-85% of these people are homeless and lived on the streets (and almost 100% are addicted to some form of substance abuse). Even knowing these stats, we both felt strong urge to love these people and to show them that they are more than trash that society has pushed aside. As a result, the people from the center are excited to see us and will greet us on the streets. We love seeing how their whole demeanor and outlook on life and people changes just from our obedience to love!
We work with 6:8 Ministries leading short-term mission groups that come down from the states wanting to serve in a foreign country. We guide and help the teams achieve different ministry goals while here. Because every team that comes down are so diverse in their talents and giftings, we often build a schedule around what they feel called to do. We host medical teams, construction teams, teaching ESL (English as a Second Language), evangelism teams, children ministry teams, and many other outreach teams with 6:8. We have two major goals while leading teams, one: To help place the teams in a position where they can clearly hear and see God in ways they may never have before, and two: To minister to the hurting community of Alajuelita, Costa Rica in real and practical ways! One thing that Amanda and I LOVE to do is to take the teams on prayer walks throughout Alajuelita. This is a wonderful time for the groups to see the kind of conditions that they will be ministering in and we use this time to pray for specific people in the community that are in need of something from God (and usually God brings someone unexpected across our path).
Even though running and leading teams are our primary focus, we are blessed to be able to use our talents to further serve the ministry. Amanda does the needed graphic work for t-shirts, flyers, team videos, and anything else that needs an artistic touch. Brian plays the djembe(african percussion instrument) for worship and preaches in the the chapel services.
We are so excited about what God has called us to do. He has taken our giftings and talents and developed the perfect place for us to be able to use each one for His glory!!