6 hours of church.

Three sermons, a kids’ club, puppets, Bible stories, songs. Mexican church services can be long.

View from the window of the house-turned-church in Mexico City

Six hours of church kept us occupied on our last Sunday. I attended Sunday School (a sermon in itself), then took a few opportunities to visit with the hermanas in the church during the break before the next service. Singing hymns in Spanish–familiar yet foreign, because I don’t know the lyrics–never gets old.

I think of our team, with Chile, Ukraine, Finland, Puerto Rico, Mexico, and the U.S. represented, and of the people here in Mexico, living in a very real place so different than my own version of familiar. I think of the authors of the words of the hymns and composers of the melodies, and the whole six-degrees-of-separation thing takes on a whole new meaning in light of the family of God.

Conversations with the missionaries are really helping me iron out my own point of view on ministry, missions, and education. Basic educational theory: teacher’s aren’t in front of the classroom to teach facts, but to teach you to ask questions. I guess it goes back to the writing maxim I learned in many professional writing classes: Curiosity is a muscle. Flex it.

Maybe curiosity isn’t just an aspect of some people’s personalities, but a necessity to live fearless, out-there kind of life God mandated. Interesting, that He didn’t say, “Go, and tell the whole world the good news, unless you’re an inherently introverted person, in which case you can go and serve Me in whatever way you’re comfortable.”

He also didn’t send us to the safest places of the world. He sent us to all of them.

The Dispatches from the Front video we watched tonight reminded us that Christian life, and all of Christian ministry, is war. And that war is hell. Wrestling against principalities and powers isn’t a walk in the park.

Get out there. Read the newspapers. Know current events and enough history for the current events to make sense. Talk to people outside your circle circles, your denomination, your country. Know what they believe and tell them the most beautiful story they’ll ever hear. Be interested. Be curious. Whether it’s in your own town or in Burma, get out there and live like your Savior is watching.

–Excerpt from journal entry 6/20/12

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