One of the greatest and most life-changing opportunities Charis Bible College offers its students is the hands-on ministry experience during their second-year mission trip to a foreign country. Over the years, we have posted many stories and videos sharing the impact that these trips have on the students and the people to whom they minister. Today's testimony provides a glimpse of just how the Lord uses these trips to spread His unconditional love and grace around the world, one small, Spirit-filled moment at a time.
CBC-Colorado student John DeBoer visited the Dominican Republic late last year with a team, led by CBC Instructor Peggy Shirley, and third-year interns, Richard and Jen Kramer. On the last day of their excursion, John and his 21 other teammates served lunch at a small food ministry for underprivileged children. Just before the children were about to eat, the pastor of the local church that sponsored the daily meal asked a young boy to come forward to lead the group in a prayer of thanksgiving.
Although John didn't understand the boy's words because he spoke in Spanish, John sensed he had prayed a heartfelt prayer. It was also clear that the boy was nervous, as he hesitated several times seeming to search for the right or acceptable words. John also noticed that some of the other children were laughing and making fun of the boy. After the child concluded his prayer he quickly sat down, away from the other kids, covered his face and began to cry. In that moment, Holy Spirit began prompted John to encourage the young man.
"I asked Conrad, our interpreter, to help me, and we took the boy outside. As we spoke with him the Holy Spirit had me tell him that Jesus was proud of him—that he had prayed a wonderful prayer, and that he was already a powerful young man of God. I also told him that God loved him so much and had a wonderful plan for his life," John said. Holy Spirit then urged John to have the boy pray a blessing over him. John said, "I asked him to pray for me, and he placed his hand on my head and prayed."
It was an awesome moment for both men of God. The younger walked away smiling and happy, and John walked away totally blessed. "The Holy Spirit blessed and encouraged that young man, and I was privileged to be the vessel He used to do it," John shared with joy in his heart.
This was just one small moment of many Spirit-filled moments that John and his team experienced during their week of ministry in the Dominican. The smallest moments can be packed with life-changing impact.