From August 15 to 22, 2021, 24 volunteers from different states of Mexico participated in Project Paul. Many such mission opportunities have been offered multiple times each year since 2005, but during the COVID-19 pandemic, most of those trips have sadly had to be canceled. Today we are sharing some testimonies from people impacted during this significant church planting initiative.
“During Project Paul there was a boy called Jonathan who caught my attention. His family would not let him attend the activities we held, since they were religious. To participate, he decided to do jobs or errands that his family ordered him to do, no matter how difficult they were. Even if his family called him in the middle of a church activity, he had to go. He never grumbled; he simply did what was asked of him and came back quickly.
On one occasion Jonathan arrived battered with bruises from the fists of his drunken father. He told us that his father didn’t know what he did because he was not in his right mind and that he knew his dad loved him, his mother and his brothers. He always defended his family and gave excuses for certain things, like the time he acted like he did not remember that his family closed the door on us when we were sharing the Gospel. That day we were outside his house, and we heard his mother send him to tell us she wasn’t there. He kept smiling and tried not to cry as he talked to us about other things.
I saw his enthusiasm to learn more about God. Despite his young age, he had that desire to know the Lord. It didn’t matter what obstacles his family put in his way; he was going to come to our activities.
Since Project Paul ended, I have been continually asking God to, through Jonathan, show his glory to his family. I know that God will speak in time to that family through this boy.” –Victoria Díaz.
“During this trip, God surprised me so many times. He showed me his love and reminded me that nothing we do is in vain and that good things come with time.
I had the opportunity to meet Mrs. Wendy. When we were evangelizing, she was very interested; she apparently had already been a member of many churches. However, all of them demanded something from her before she could come to the feet of Jesus; salvation was never offered as a free gift to her.
She began to ask me multiple questions about what the Church of the Nazarene was and why she should believe if she had been treated badly by churches in the past. Mrs. Wendy was surprised because they told her all that time what she was missing, but they did not show her who she was longing for. As we kept sharing with her about a loving God, her doubts disappeared. She began to understand that God’s love is more than following a list of rules. She agreed to more visits and to receive discipleship with the intention of continuing on and learning more about God.” –Amin Damian.
“The moment that I will never forget and that marked my life a lot was meeting three children: Roberto (6 years old), Alicia (8 years old) and Yamileth (10 years old).
We spent two weeks teaching classes to children, and then we began to go to their houses to disciple them. What filled me the most was seeing that these three kids invited some friends who live near their house. Since they had come to know Jesus, they wanted others to meet their new best friend!
Among those children was Librado. Through the love of Jesus, I could see him move from being a very introverted and shy boy to opening up completely to us. Seeing these children and their smiles transformed by the love of Jesus filled me with great joy!
The mother of these boys accepted Jesus into her heart, and she also participated in discipleship when she saw that her children were learning about God.
I saw Jesus in every moment. I keep thanking God for allowing me to be a part of this trip!” –Jaydi Novelo.
“The testimony that most impacted me comes from a marriage: after no one would invite us in, Karla, the mother of four children, was the first to open her door for us to talk and share the message of salvation. It is not easy to let two strangers into your house; however, she confidently let us in. When we began to share the gospel with her, Karla fixed her eyes on us attentively without saying anything. After five minutes with her head bowed, she began to cry. I realized that the Spirit of God was speaking through us as we talked with Karla. She shared with us that her family and her marriage were in crisis; she had endured so many hardships for years. She had tried to find refuge in other things so she could forget the emptiness she felt in her heart.
We had already walked hours under the sun without eating. We were knocking on doors with the hope that someone would finally listen to the message of salvation for five minutes. I admit that we just wanted to finish our work for the day! But after deciding to knock on one last door, that’s when the miracle happened! Karla accepted Jesus as her Savior. We discipled her and she is now waiting to be baptized. Hallelujah!
Karla continues to pray and read her Bible, so that one day her husband can come closer to God and accept him as Savior, too. Her children attend services at the mission, and they are taught according to their ages. We have faith that, just as God rescued Karla, so will He rescue her husband as well.” –Priscila Moguel.