Spring Break in Nicaragua

nicaragua spring break trip whpc Westlake hills prebyterian church austin

There’s nothing like a relaxing spring break in the rainforests of northern Nicaragua.       El Sacoro is a tiny coffee-farming village nestled in the mountains and is home to approximately 45 families with limited electricity, and none of the accommodations that say comfort to a North American youth.

Our team traveled with A Ministry of Sharing Health and Hope of Nicaragua. AMOS works with rural communities, empowering them to be self-sufficient and healthier by using the resources they currently have and resources AMOS can provide.  They educate and train individuals who live in the community to be health promotors.  They educate individuals and the community team regarding water purification.  AMOS also provides health seminars and training for better health and in general, work with the rural communities in ways that otherwise would not be available for them.  When a team like ours stays in a rural community they are housed in a church, school or at the clinic.  Cots, sleeping bags, bucket showers and latrines are to be expected along with the morning sounds of pigs, cows and the family rooster.  Ear plugs are a must for a good night’s sleep.

While this village may be short on North American Comfort, it is clearly long on love and very open to welcoming our team (delegation) from Texas.  We were greeted by several members of the village council.  They sang songs, prayed and shared scripture.  As they were sharing the scripture it was clear that God had laid it on their hearts to share this message with our team.  While we were coming as missionaries, it was evident that they were taking the opportunity to evangelize as well.  Were they evangelizing us because of stories they have heard about American culture, or were they taking advantage of the opportunity to reach their brothers and sisters who were in attendance that might not normally hear the gospel message.  If I were the pastor in El Sacoro, I would have done the same thing.  Share the word and trust God for the outcome.  As our team sang to them in English it was amazing to feel the power of the Holy Spirit and to see the love and passion on the faces of all who were present.

This is the second year that I have traveled to Nicaragua with Louise Redding, her daughter Hayley and Hayley’s friends. Our goal was to provide funds for building a kitchen, help with its construction and do water filtration assessment and training.   Each afternoon we also had a time of VBS for the children and special activities for the older youth and women.  While we plan, it is always best to be flexible.  You never know when God may lead you in a different direction.  Making flower crowns, blowing bubbles, parachute games and Bible stories in Spanish can be challenging, but we learned that Google Translate actually works in remote areas and we can communicate way more effectively than we ever thought possible.

God is good and no matter how many times I go to Nicaragua, I feel His presence and know that He is doing a Good work in and through everyone on the team.  Seeds are being planted and in time there will be a harvest.  Please join me in praising God in advance for that harvest.

Your sister in Christ

Nancy Pickett