I spent the past three weeks exploring new parts of the world – 12 days in Brasil for my brother Mark’s wedding, and a week in Nicaragua for Area Director School with Young Life. I returned to Guatemala late Saturday night and have been catching my breath ever since, trying to process all of the experiences and conversations I’ve had over the past weeks. I’ll devote a few posts to Brasil – the people, the cities, the FOOD, the wedding, but first I want to share a few reflections on my time in Nicaragua.
It’s a very exciting time to be on YL staff in Central America as we are part of the “Doble Doble” initiative – doubling the number kids impacted and the number of volunteer leaders – and doubling it again, in the next 7 years. When I first heard about “Doble Doble” I was skeptical as it’s easy to fall into the trap of pursuing numbers without pursuing healthy ministry. In Guatemala, numbers are scary since we’re small and new.
After a week with leaders from the region, my skepticism is alleviated as I see how people are pursuing Christ and kids as they seek growth in the region. The mantra of the week was, “Jesus is the goal.” The goal is not actually doubling anything, but we are praying that that is a biproduct of pursuing the movement of the Holy Spirit in and around Vida Joven / Young Life in Central America.
It was humbling for me to be a part of a team of leaders who are seeking to proclaim the gospel in their respective countries, to learn from truly visionary people who are dreaming for Central America, and to gain a wider vision of Vida Joven America Central!
A fun highlight – Nicaraguans love baseball, and so do I! Matagalpa and Managua were in a best of 7
series with Matagalpa up 3-0. It was do or die time for Managua, and we got to go see the game! There is a lot of Vida Joven in both cities, so there was a lot of fun banter within our group. Managua won the game in Matagalpa and the 6 VJ staff from Managua were the only happy people in the way overcrowded stadium. They even managed to get a spot on the local news! It was fun to be a part of the rivalry!