God in the Middle of the Mess
Blog post written by Julianne Matthews, Crean Graduate
Since this is my third time serving in El Salvador, I expected to be met with the same familiar experiences and emotions of my past trips. However, as the day went on I realized that God continues to change my perceptions and my beliefs. In the morning we visited a local church called Monte Calvario Cristiano. I had been here on the last trip and was absolutely blown away by how much it had grown. There were a few different testimonies shared during the service, but I was especially touched by one thing that Jenni Ramsey, our team leader, shared during her message.
She talked about how God is in the middle of our brokenness, in the middle of our mess. He is working through our trials and He's right in the middle of the mess of our lives. Whatever mess we have made, whatever brokenness we have been brought through or done to ourselves, God is always near. He gives us healing and is able to make something beautiful out of our mess.
This message was perfect for how we were about to spend our day, placing ourselves in the middle of this mess and chaos of dresses, shoes, glitter, paint, and yes, even wax with young women who have experienced tremendous brokenness. Today was a day I will never forget. It was one of my favorite spiritual experiences that I have ever had. I’m not one to believe fairytales, but I can promise you that I met some beautiful and strong princesses today. Knowing what these girls have endured breaks my heart and I was overwhelmed by their excitement and emotions as we told them about the quinceanera.
Most of these girls have never picked their own dresses or shoes. They have never had someone do their hair or wax their eyebrows. Perhaps they've never been told that they are valuable or even pretty. The shy and insecure girls that we met in the morning transformed into confident and vibrant girls within a few hours as we shared the hope of Jesus, pampered them and celebrated their lives.
Today was a day of transformation, and it was only the first day! It's amazing to see how quickly and creatively God’s Spirit works in new situations. I would like to ask you to please pray for all the girls involved with the quinceañera. Pray that they will believe the words that we spoke over them today, that they are not forgotten by their Heavenly Father. They are beautiful, valued and worth it!