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God's Universal Language: Love

As the sun rose on our second day in El Salvador, I was greeted by the sounds of the local birds and the hustle and bustle of the early morning traffic here around the mission house. After we all had our breakfast, we decided where we were going to go for our morning activities, and I decided that I would go help distribute food packs to local families in the area. I wasn’t sure what to expect, as this was the first time for me to participate in this aspect of our trip, but I was excited to see how God would shape this experience for me.

There is always a little hesitation when you are facing the unknown. I don’t speak Spanish, but I can understand and speak a few words and phrases. That was on my mind as we arrived at our first house. My hesitation and quickly disappeared, thankfully, because even though I don’t speak the language, God made sure that there were universally recognized signs that we can all understand.

Team members (left to right) Deevana Rodriguez (Hernando UMC), Donna Norris (Senatobia UMC), Joe Mason (Minor Memorial UMC), and Aggie Doddridge (Maples Memorial UMC) visit with a local family.

Love. Compassion. Acceptance. As we sat and visited with the first local family, you could feel the Holy Spirit surrounding us. Sure, the language barrier was there, but that wasn’t an obstacle on our visit. We had a translator with us, but even if there hadn’t been, the joy and tears that were expressed (from both the family and us) was enough for all to understand that we were appreciated and what we were doing was a blessing.

We visited four or five more houses this morning and each house was different in appearance, but the sentiment and outcome was the same: The presence of the Lord was right there with us in that small neighborhood in the valley of

El Salvador.

After each visit, we said a prayer before exiting the homes and we felt just as blessed as the families that had received the food packs. They received items to fill their pantries...but we received the blessings for being able to share in God’s work.

Amen, as it turns out, is the same in English and Spanish.

Joe Mason, Minor Memorial UMC

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