From the very beginning of the Ambassadors, we asked the Lord to simply help us pay attention. We prayed that we would be able to pay attention to the Spirit of God. We prayed that we would pay attention to the Word of God. And we prayed we would pay attention to the people God would send across our path.
This Sunday morning, as I try to process the last few days in the Dominican Republic, I can't help but to overflow with gratefulness how the experience of paying attention to God has transformed our lives. The Bible is clear and life experience has revealed that God is working all around us in supernatural ways. Often, I find myself not paying attention to what He is doing and after this week with the Lord and with the Ambassadors, I pray that I can spend the rest of my life paying attention to my amazingly beautiful Savior and wonderful Maker
I only have about 30 minutes before we leave for the airport but before we leave, I want to pick up on our experience after the hospital and summarize the rest of the trip.
On the baseball field, the team went 5-1 in the Dominican. We played six dogfight baseball games against the best international competition we have ever faced. Last night was an amazing game. We came back from 4 runs in the 8th inning to tie the game and then took the lead in the top of the 9th. It was one of the most exciting baseball games I have ever witnessed. I don't have time to go into all the highlights but Luke Sandoval's amazing A.B. got the momentum rolling for us. With two outs in the 8th, Lane Paul came through on a huge hit to tie the game. In the bottom of the 8th, their first batter had an amazing hit down the line but Brennan Walker made a Sports Center Top Play horizontal diving catch in right field to rob the Dominicans of a triple. In the 9th, Chase Kuwitzky had an enormous sac fly to score the go ahead run. Austin Bright entered the game in the bottom of the 9th and started the inning with two K's. I wish you could have felt the electricity in the stadium. Austin was so pumped, after every SO, he was circling the mound strutting like one of the peacocks and guinney we chased around at one of our clinics. It was awesome. He finished wrapped up the 3 up and 3 down with a pop fly to right field and as soon as Brenan made the catch, the dog pile was on. It was fun.
Off the baseball field, we had an even more amazing experience. On Thursday, we went to the dump right outside of Santiago. Ramon had helped us connect with an amazing school serving the very poor community surrounding the city trash sight. As we pulled up, the sights and smells of burning trash captivated our attention but all that dirt and grime were quickly overlooked as we encountered some of the most beautiful kids we have ever seen. Several of our guys had the opportunity to share their testimonies and we just had a blast giving our bibles and sharing a meal with the 100 plus kids who attended this school. An experience like this sure does help a person gain perspective on life. Before I head out, I will post a picture of the dump and the kids to the Ambassador page on facebook just to try to give you a picture of it. I can't really describe the blessing of this day so I will let you look at the pictures. If you get the chance to sit with an Ambassador, ask them about it. It will bless you.
Oh yeah, I also forgot to mention that Adrian had foot surgery this week in the D.R. for an in-grown toe nail. He videoed the surgery. It was not only a really cool video, it was hillarious watching him coach in flip flops.
After the dump, we continued to work at paying attention to the Lord. God opened the door with so many people in the Dominican. Remember the rapper that we met? He is actually one of the most influential youth pastors in Santiago. (Paying attention). He came to our game on Thursday with a lot of the American leaders from their ministry. This will become a huge connection for us in the future. This was such a blessing becasue many of our opponents had accepted Christ throughout the week. Isiaus came on the field and after Preston Williams shared his testimony in Spanish which was awesome and Drew Weston tag teamed sharing his testimony with our opponents, Isaius invited these guys to his ministry. Because he was a rapper, they asked him to do a little freestyle. He busted out this rap on the field that was awesome. As he was "flowin" I could not help but ask the Lord to allow me to become a rapper. (Maybe that is not paying attention to the Spirit of God in my life but every body has to have dreams right?) Even though God probably will not allow me to become a rapper, it was really cool to see the Lord allow us to make a supernatural connection with Isaias because God used him to connect in a big way with these new believers. It was amazing.
Yesterday, was not really a day of rest for the guys but it was at least a day of play. We got up yesterday morning and headed to the beach. It was such a blast. Tubing, Bannana boat, swimming and 5 hours of beach time was a great way to wrap up the week.
We are about 20 minutes from loading the bus in Santiago for a two hour bus ride back to Santo Domingo. On the bus, we will have our final share time with each guy sharing what that A on their hat means to them. I am looking forward to hearing how God used the Ambassadors this summer in their lives. From the beginning we have all prayed that the Lord would help our guys deepen in their love for the Lord and that they would grow a real passion for the souls of men.
If you pay attention to these guys as they share about what God did in their lives this summer, I think you will find that God has accomplished that in their lives.
I am proud of these guys and I am thankful that they served the Lord so faithfully this summer. I am also thankful to all of you who supported this ministry both by prayer and by financial donations. Your investment most definitely made a significant impact in the kingdom of God. Many people came to Christ this summer on baseball fields. Many leaders were developed this summer through His Spirit, His word, and Justin's life.
It was really amazing to pay attention to all the ways the Lord moved and to see all the things the Lord has done. All that is just another reason we are all compelled to worship Him this Sunday morning. Can I challenge you to pay attention to Him in your life. You will never regret it.
Nos Vemos, Dios le bendiga!
Sun, July 29, 2012
by Chris Wall