I just spent three months living in Spain. A lot can happen in a quarter of a year! There really is no better way to begin to understand a group of people, acculturate, or learn a language quite like diving in and being immersed in it. The power of immersion isn’t in some grand effort to learn, but in the simple, daily compounding of small happenings. Every interaction, conversation, or people-watching session subtly shapes your experience, and then, all of a sudden, three months later you realize how much you’ve actually learned in that time. Needless to say, it was a fantastic experience.
And while I learned mucho español during my time in Spain, this update is going to be about what else I learned there. I learned, for example, that the Spanish are indeed a warm and fun-loving people. I saw firsthand that despite being well-dressed and going out to eat often, most of the Spanish are struggling financially. I heard from those my age that you’re more likely to find a good job outside of Spain than within. I felt the effects of an unstable Spanish government as, within 2 days, the current prime minister was removed in a vote of no confidence and replaced by another man who later proceeded to use the prime ministerial jet to fly to a concert. And I learned that Roman Catholicism is much like a national identity to the Spaniards. If your parents were Catholic, then so are you, even if you haven’t stepped into a church for a couple decades.
All that to say that this is a people looking for hope. Who can give hope like the Messiah who conquered death? This is a people looking for peace. Who can provide peace like the Giver of Unconditional Love? This is a people looking for fulfillment. Who can fulfill like the very God who created us?
I have so much excitement for the coffeeshop outreach we are working to open in Spain. I have no doubt that it’s impact will be huge. I have no doubt that lives will be changed.
Yet there are some things that need to happen before we move forward.
- Please consider giving to help us raise the final amount needed to purchase our coffeeshop property. This will not just be a building. This will be a permanent investment into the lives of students in Spain. We have raised $120,000 already. We need only $300,000 more before we can purchase this property and start impacting the lives of 37,000 students in Spain.
- Please also pray that we would be shown favor in the legal process of establishing our shop in Spain and for the approval of my visa.
- I will be returning to Spain in October to begin my life there. I look forward to rejoining the communities I started becoming a part of when I was there this summer. Until the coffeeshop can be established, I will be working alongside existing campus ministries to reach out to students through events, clubs, and English-teaching. Please pray for me as I start putting together the foundation for the upcoming years of ministry.
Thank You For Praying:
- One of my earlier prayer requests to you was that God would help me in my Spanish learning. People here have noticed and commented on how much I’ve progressed in only 3 months. It’s more than anyone expected. God is working and answering prayers.
- God also brought me many people in Spain who I needed to talk to. Incredible connections have been formed, and there is already a substantial network developing around this coffeeshop that isn’t even open yet!