Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Gracias and Taco

This week I had the incredible privilege of meeting and spending some time with a man named Carlos who is from Argentina. Carlos is a believer in Jesus who has a real heart to reach Spanish-speaking people for Christ. He is working with a couple of Evangelical Free Churches in the area to start a work in Reading. I was surprised to learn that 60% of the population of Reading, PA speaks Spanish and many of them need Jesus.

Carlos has an amazing story and it is a story of faith. He and his wife and two children moved to America and spent time in Texas where he went to school. He has now come to PA with a burning calling from God but very little in the way of financial support. That doesn't matter to Carlos. He shared story after story with me of how God met his needs over and over again since coming to America without having any money in his pocket.

It was refreshing spending this time with Carlos. I was greatly encouraged by two things. First, Carlos' great faith. Compared to Carlos I have much in the way of tangible things, yet I find myself becoming anxious over the small stuff in comparison. It is always refreshing to meet someone who exhibits the ability to really trust God in a Matthew 6:33 fashion - "Seek first the Kingdom of God and all these things will be added to you."

But it was also refreshing to see someone's ministry being driven by a pure, unadulterated passion to see lost people come to know Jesus. Carlos isn't focused on church politics, church polity, church tradition, or church governance, as so many. His heart is reaching lost people. It is true. Evangelism must be the engine that drives the church.

What was even more amazing about my time with Carlos is that he speaks very little English. That's a problem because the only Spanish words I know are "gracias" and "taco" (and I'm pretty sure that "taco" isn't a Spanish word). So how did we communicate? Carlos has a delightful 7-year old daughter who did all of the translating for us. She speaks both English and Spanish fluently (I don't even speak English fluently)! What a blessing this encounter was.

Be sure to read my other blog entitled "Hope For Hurting Pastors" at or email me at

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