I recently went to Costa Rica for 11 days. I love traveling and I love ministering the gospel to hurting people. Costa Rica was a very different trip for me. I had been to Costa Rica before, ministering through drama mostly to young kids. Most of the missions trip that I have been on have been fun and upbeat trips with children, music, drama, excitement!
And then there was this trip…
Our mission was to speak to and share the gospel with transsexual and transvestite prostitutes on the streets of San Jose. A simple ministry actually: we would just walk through the streets with cookies and crackers and when we saw someone we would offer them a snack. We began to listen to their stories. Stories about their family, their journey, their dreams. The ministry we were working with called Nexus would then begin to share a short Bible devotional. Nothing fancy. No earth shattering alter call. Just a simple, ‘I read this verse this morning and I wanted to share it with you.’ That’s it. Simple. Relationship building. Creating friendships. They would do this weekly so people would get to know them and begin to ask them questions about the Lord, church, the body of Christ. Eventually a few have come to the church. The church has had to be open to accepting such a person into a holy place. That is hard for the church. So many of us already try to hide our already hidden sin even more each time we step into the church, imagine how uncomfortable some church folk you know would be to see a transvestite attend your church service. As terribly wrong it is, unfortunately, we know it’s true.
I heard their testimonies. The most powerful thing I saw was to hear a man give his testimony how he was once a transsexual, came to church, and let God turn his life around. A few days later, we went to church on Sunday morning and I saw him serving as an usher with a huge smile on his face. He KNEW he had been rescued and now he was serving. Not only attending, but serving. What a powerful testimony!
At first I begin to think, “wait, why am I working in Haiti when there is so much hurt going on here? I’m working with children but I need to work with transvestites too.” It was a brief thought before I realized what God was doing in my heart. This is what He told me:
My heart is so big. It is able to encompass every type of individual from children to transvestites from the church to the streets. Every single type of person is dear and special to my heart. My heart is so big that I can encompass a deep passion for every type of individual and I have carefully distributed a little part of my heart to everyone. That is why some of us have such a strong passion for children and others of us share more of a passion for men involved in prostitution. Some of you love music or love to dance and some of you love numbers. Some of you connect with Costa Rica and others with Haiti. Each of you have a little part of my heart and in order to accomplish my perfect plan, I need you to work together. I purposefully didn’t give just one person my entire heart. One, you would explode. Two, I desire my church to work together in unity. I need everyone doing what I have burned in your heart and equipped you to do so that my perfect work and passion is completed and displayed in all of the earth.
In the streets of Costa Rica, I saw the outcome if I didn’t do my part. As I heard each testimony of these men they all had in common something that didn’t quite go right as a child. Not to say that everyone who has a perfect childhood will turn out perfect or everyone who has a not so perfect childhood will turn out not so perfect, but something happens to us and shapes us when we are children. I could see how my neglect of these orphans that God has called me to could develop into such hurt and pain as an adult. We need everyone. Whatever your passion is, follow that. Wherever and to whomever it may lead you. Because this world needs you!
And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.
Copyright © 2013 Rachel D. Fenimore All Rights Reserved