The light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it. –John 1:5
We all experience darkness.
Those times in our lives when things just aren’t going as we had planned, when we feel far from God, and we feel hopeless – in those times we can’t focus on the good because all of the bad seems to be drowning us.
We try to pull our head above the water and yet something else continues to pull us under.
Surrounded by Darkness
During my time in Guatemala this year, I realized that darkness is everywhere.
The families there have real struggles. They have a hard time meeting their basic needs-food, water, and shelter. Their families are constantly sick. Alcoholism and abuse is very real.
They work hard, yet have nothing to show for it. They have the same struggles as we do as well as struggles most of us could never even imagine.
Santa Maria seems like a hopeless place. You look into the eyes of a child who goes to bed hungry every night and you see sadness. You talk to a mom who is sobbing because her infant is sick and they don’t have the money to go to the doctor, let alone the medication. You walk into a home of an elderly woman to give her a bag of food, quickly to find out that is her only food for the week. There is no father in the home because he leaves for work before the sun is up and returns home after the sun goes down, yet he isn’t making enough money to provide for his family.
Your heart breaks into a million pieces. You want to help everyone but how? There is so much that needs fixed.
Our God is Bigger
But the more time I spent in Guatemala, I realized that they don’t need me to fix them. It’s not my job to fix them. We can help make their lives a little easier but what they need so much more than being fixed is knowing a God who is bigger than the problems. A God who brings light to their darkness. They need to know that they are not alone and there is hope.
When we go into the village we are their to build beds, put new roofs on, pour concrete floors, install water tanks, give out clothes and shoes, and host VBS. Those projects are so important because they do make the people’s lives a little easier. But by doing this work it gives us the opportunity to love on the people and to share Jesus with them.
Long after the new roofs rust or the kids are too big for the beds, we want each family to know without a doubt that they are loved by the creator of the universe and He hasn’t forgotten them.
In the village there are still a million problems that need a solution. There are still sick kids. There are still men who come home drunk and beat their children. There are still hungry bellies, dirt floors, and roofs with holes. But in the midst of the darkness, light is beginning to shine through. The people of Santa Maria have hope in Jesus.
You Make the Darkness Tremble
This year our team learned the song Tremble by Mosaic MSC to share with the people in Santa.
We wanted to share this song with the people because it is a song of hope. There is a line in the song that says, “Jesus, Jesus, you make the darkness tremble, Jesus, Jesus you silence fear.”
We wanted our family in the village on the mountain to know, long after we left, that Jesus was still with them in their darkness.
Here is Tremble by Mosaic MSC: