Being a missionary can be pretty terrifying at times. This week grew me in confidence and humility. Our manual labor has been finished for quite awhile now, leaving our mornings free. We have taken that time to walk around the community and get to know the people living near us better. Walking along the dirt roads seeking out new friends is very remnant of Swaziland. I spent many afternoons there seeking out people to talk to and pray for. I enjoyed doing this but we weren’t about to settle for the easy and predictable. My team wanted to make a bigger impact. Ideas flowing through the room. Excited voices sounding their ideas. Then one brave soul spoke out, we choose to do street evangelism. Um not my first choice, it’s putting yourself out there to be rejected. We made a since that said “free prayer, God bless you” We put free because it’s said that people here have to pay for others to pray for them in Catholic churches and it’s the payment that pays for their sins. This statement makes me sick. God’s love and grace for us is given! He so freely gave us His son only to be murdered for us.
There we stood holding our sign close to the center of town. Asking for bravery of people to come up. We got a lot of wired looks and disapproving stares. I became discouraged and a little hurt by the rejection. Then a man came to us and started thanking us for our work. He stayed and talking with us for quite some tome just talking. Then a few others came for prayer.
The next day we took my guitar to play. Also bringing with us paper and coloured pencils for kids to draw with. I sat there with my friend Allie and worshipped on the side of the road by a busy street. People passing and going about their day. Holding hands of their children, pushing carts with breads or drinks. Moterbikes whizzing by. I’d put myself in the middle of it all and took time to just worship. It’s on odd thing really, being so peaceful amongst the chaos. Then to my surprise something magical happened. People started coming up to us. Asking questions, wanting prayer, just wanting to listen to the music. They felt comfortable with it there. How odd that something so small would usher in so many people. As they walked up they seemed confident. The fear in them seemed as gone as it was in us. As people walked by they smiled in my direction. Waving sometimes nodding their heads in confirmation that this was okay.
This broke down walls I didn’t know were up. Music is such a big part of Latin culture it would only make sense that it would make them feel so safe. We had found it and because of it people were prayed for. They were given a little bit of hope and love poured out of us from the Lord.
During our time on the streets we started talking with the street food venders. There all very sweet. One man we met is from Argentina. He’s been backpacking for quite awhile now. He sells banana bread to make money, it was incredible banana bread. Another man we met is a sales man. He came to talk to us a few days in a row, we invited him to english class and he came! Our class is quickly filling with people we’ve met and invited.