Carol Verdugo and Juan Carlos Oñate traveled to the Indiana-Kentucky Conference of the UCC during June.
“I have always thought that telling about a trip experience is hard but it is even more difficult to explain on paper the experiences that mark our lives.”
Carol Verdugo and Juan Carlos Oñate traveled to the Indiana-Kentucky Conference of the UCC during June. Below is a reflection from Carol.
I have always thought that telling about a trip experience is hard but it is even more difficult to explain on paper the experiences that mark our lives.
About fifteen years ago, Pastor David Vargas, who was then the area executive for Latin America and the Caribbean at Global Ministries, came to visit our church in Curicó. I was a Sunday School teacher at the time, and when I had the opportunity to greet him, I asked him where he was from and what a characteristic of his city was. He responded, “Someday you will go to my city and you will see for yourself.” That phrase remained treasured in my heart like a little flickering light that invited me to believe in the plans God has for us and that will come to be in the time and moment that only God knows.
Fifteen years went by before that little light shown bright in my heart again, allowing me to live an unforgettable experience.
Fireflies are wonderful insects – they just had to be part of God`s creation! One can see them from a distance, their flickering lights a symphony in the darkness. That is what it was like for me to travel to another country and meet such wonderful people. In the past year, I have lived complex times, but the light of these people has shown me that God`s hand has not left me and that the lights of blessing continue to shine for those of us who believe.
Every day, every word, every person, every situation was planned to fill us with blessing and to help us recognize that the universal language that breaks all barriers is the love of God in us. The Holy Spirit allowed us to understand each other even with language difficulties and taught us to enjoy the cultural differences with moments of “Koinonia,” living Shalom together to the rhythm of God`s creativity.
When a firefly joins with another, their light is brighter. That happened to me in those days of my journey. Even in the midst of the personal difficulties I was living, I was finally able to take that little light, planted in me 15 years ago and that slept in my heart, and join it to the light of my sisters and brothers in the United States. We shown together and shared happy moments that I will treasure and share with all those who also dream of being a light in the midst of the darkness.
Carol Verdugo Núñez
Elena Huegel serves with the Pentecostal Church of Chile (IPC). She serves as an environmental and Christian education specialist.