Welcome to Chimbote, Peru!
It’s January 2019, and we have finally come to the time. 2019 marks my 5th journey to Peru. Others in our group have been many more times than that. And as we seem to have every year, some of our group this year will be there for the very first time. In fact, this might be the largest group of first-timers we’ve ever had. Whether this is your first trip, or your 10th, there’s one thing for certain; you will experience something new in Chimbote. It will be very different from life at home. It will be unpredictable.
One important reminder, particularly for our newest travelers: embrace the newness. Embrace the unpredictability and the twists and turns that come your way. During the week, schedules will get off track (we fondly call it being “on Peru time”). If you’re an engineer (by trade or at heart), you should know Peruvian house engineering does not always mean a 90° angle. Someone may ask you for your shoes… while you’re still wearing them. Simply stated, something will not work as expected.
More than anything embrace the people you are with, both American and Peruvian. Give support to those who need it, and seek support from those who offer it. Work hard and play hard. Love big, and don’t be surprised when love is showered back on you greater than you ever imagined. In the end, the love you share and the love that is shared with you may be the greatest blessing of the week.
This devotional booklet is an open invitation to share. The passage below was chosen to remind us of our calling as a mission team in Chimbote, and more so as followers of Christ, to share God’s love. I pray our daily devotional time will provide you an opportunity and platform for spiritual growth, affirmation of faith, learning and support. I also pray that you see and feel God at work this week. Just know God can and will work through you in all times, in all situations, in all places; even in – perhaps especially in – Chimbote.
Blessings to all.
Love each other as I have loved you [John 15:12]
Whether you are a Chimbote veteran or a mission rookie, you are going into this trip with some level of expectations. As you go through the week, take some time to write your thoughts, perhaps with daily journal entries. The following questions may help you get started.
As you start the week, ask yourself:
- Why am I in Chimbote?
- What do I expect to accomplish?
- Do I really expect to see God working through me?
After the trip, please reflect on your experiences and answer these questions
- Did the experience fall short, meet or exceed my expectations? How so?
- What did I/we accomplish?
- How did God work through me?
Devotional Day 1
Welcome to Chimbote. Now what?
But Moses said to the Lord, “O my Lord, I have never been eloquent, neither in the past nor even now that you have spoken to your servant; but I am slow of speech and slow of tongue.” Then the Lord said to him, “Who gives speech to mortals? Who makes them mute or deaf, seeing or blind? Is it not I, the Lord? Now go, and I will be with your mouth and teach you what you are to speak.” But he said, “O my Lord, please send someone else.”
Devotional Day 2
COMMANDED to love one another.
“Which commandment is the first of all?” Jesus answered, “The first is, ‘Hear, O Israel: the Lord our God, the Lord is one; you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ The second is this, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.
1 John 3: 23-24
And this is his commandment, that we should believe in the name of his Son Jesus Christ and love one another, just as he has commanded us. All who obey his commandments abide in him, and he abides in them. And by this we know that he abides in us, by the Spirit that he has given us.
Devotional Day 3
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight
Devotional Day 4
First Timothy 6:6-8
But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that.
Devotional Day 5
Jeremiah 12: 5
If you have raced with men on foot, and they have wearied you, how will you compete with horses? And if in a safe land you are so trusting, what will you do in the thicket of the Jordan?
Mark 12: 41-44
He sat down opposite the treasury, and watched the crowd putting money into the treasury. Many rich people put in large sums. A poor widow came and put in two small copper coins, which are worth a penny. Then he called his disciples and said to them, “Truly I tell you, this poor widow has put in more than all those who are contributing to the treasury. For all of them have contributed out of their abundance; but she out of her poverty has put in everything she had, all she had to live on.”
Matthew 25: 31-46
“Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink? And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you, or naked and gave you clothing? And when was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you? And the king will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.’
Isaiah 43: 1-2
But now thus says the Lord, he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel: Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you.