Today we started our day with breakfast at the hotel in McAllen.  I will say one of the great things about this hotel is they serve really good coffee.  I believe we left as Marty directed us at 7:00am… PRETTY-sharp for Hidalgo and Border Mission where we had devotions.  We are really appreciative of our worship team Doug and Cody for getting our hearts and minds in tune to hear what God has for us through the devotions brought in style by David Burkett.  For those of you who know David or have been blessed to hear him preach you will be familiar with these Burkett-isms

“Can I hear an Amen?”

“Come on”

“Can anybody say……..?”

God truly uses our devotional time to get us focused on serving and trusting him for all the days activities.

Today we have an easy day because we only have a half day of work followed by a festival at the Alianza Church in Reynosa.  Festivals are easy right?  Well, I think all of us would agree; even those of us hand mixing and pouring concrete at Big Heart Orphanage that the morning work was a breeze compared to helping at the festival.  Thank God that we only do one festival while we are here.  Don’t get me wrong, we love the festival.  It gives us a chance to see thousands of smiling kids and families having all kinds of fun, games, food and even some animals to ride or pet.  It gives us a chance for some brief interaction with them to share the love of Christ through a smile, a prize, some candy or food or a kind word in Spanish.  We don’t have an official head count but there were probable 3,000 to 5,000 people who came to the festival.  Many of them heard the gospel message and received Bibles, and around 50 prayed to receive Christ.  What an awesome outreach for the people of Reynosa!  The weather was forecast to be around 80% chance of rain, which could have greatly reduced participation in the event, not to mention all the extra effort to keep things dry etc….  Needless to say, much prayer went into asking God for weather mercies.  God clearly answered our prayers and gave us a perfectly beautiful day and not a drop of rain.

The morning work session/ministries was split into 5 main groups:

  • Work at the Refugio orphanage and school. They extended the courtyard roof and built a storage room roof.  Another team at Refugio assembled playground equipment and a team also installed a fan for air circulation in one of the buildings.
  • Big heart Orphanage: I had the privilege of working on the concrete crew.  It was a lot of hard work, but we were able to mix and pour almost all of the footings for the new kitchen and a slab for the large water tank.  Another crew worked on drywall prep-work for Pastor Jose’s house.  Please keep Pastor Jose in your prayers as his sister recently passed away from a heart attack.
  • Prison tour: My impression from talking to the other guys who have done prison tours is that prisons in Mexico are a bit less comfortable that in the US.  I think it is great that we make time for these down and out men.  The team shares the love of God through blankets and quilts and also the Gospel message and prayer.
  • Festival Prep: The Festival is so huge that it is a cooperative effort by many groups.  Power is responsible for providing much of the equipment, prizes and food and therefore needs a team to get  set up.  Alianza is very involved as well with the preparation and logistics since the festival is held on church property.  There was also a group of about 35 guys from a large church in the Dallas-Fort Worth area called Compass who help out significantly.  It’s a blessing to be able to team up with these other groups to make this huge event a success.
  • Food Crew: Not sure how many were on this, but with about 60 hungry Power guys coming in for lunch, a food crew is often necessary to get make it happen.  An easily overlooked crew, but very, very important to the whole operation.  It’s no secret that Power men can really put away the food.

Made it back safely to McAllen.  Dinner at Golden Corral.  Wow!  Some of our precious ministry partners and missionaries also joined us for dinner.

Another Powerful day down on the border.