We partner with International Teams for some very specific reasons.
Their Vision excites us and it makes sense to us, and their experience (having done this all over the world) means that we can learn from them and be confident knowing that we aren’t going at this alone. Let’s first take a look at their vision and then apply that to what we’re doing in Nicaragua.
“Lives and Communities Transformed by the Power of God.”
We believe that every life matters and that no person should be invisible. As Jesus restores us, we are able to see others as He sees them.
We believe that communities are made up of lives and that people were made to live in community. Jesus invites us to continue the work that he started. We recognize that only through his power can a life be transformed which in turn can begin to transform a community.
We believe that transformation is at the heart of the Gospel. Transformation begins with God in us, and spreads as we join with God and each other in our communities.
By the Power of God.
Although we are looking at the physical needs of The Poor, The Slave & The Blind, we are not just interested in social transformation, we believe in the Power of the Holy Spirit and the need for reconciliation with God in order for lives and communities to be holistically transformed.
- Transformation in Nicaragua
What does “Mission” mean to us?
We believe that God is on mission, all around the world, everywhere. We are not working FOR God, we are joining Him in his work that has been taking place for a very long time. Or in other words, we are working WITH God. Often, Missions organizations tend to lean one way or another. You have traditional Missions (discipleship and evangelism) and you have Compassion (social and justice) and often these are seen as opposing approaches towards ministry. By looking at the whole of a person, we are bridging the gap in these typical approaches, so that it doesn’t have to be either/or. By learning to look at people the way Jesus does, it’s impossible to separate the physical and spiritual needs of a person. The scriptures contain significant examples of Jesus ministering to the whole needs of people, and with Jesus we’re invited to continue that work.
So what does this all mean in relation to what we’re doing in Nicaragua?
ITeams has a vision that is referred to as the 2020 Vision, which is essentially the goal of seeing 50 communities where no one is invisible and everyone has access to food, freedom, and forgiveness, by the year 2020. To learn more about that vision, go check out the videos where Scott Olson, CEO of ITeams, defines it in more detail. http://www.iteams.us/2020-vision/. Our vision is for Masatepe, Nicaragua to be one of those 50 communities.
Where do we start?
Masatepe is a new community for ITeams, but of course not for God. As we become part of the community, while striving to look at people through the eyes of Jesus, we start by looking for where God is already at work in our community, becoming a part of the community through relationships, and by inviting others to pursue a closer relationship with Christ alongside us. Through those relationships, and by living within the community, we can begin to identify the real needs of the community as well as the people and organizations who are already meeting those needs to some level. From there, we begin to bring people together to help the oppressed. As lives are touched and people begin to seek more of Jesus, we believe it is vital to have an active faith community in which they can live that out amongst other believers. We believe that as lives are transformed and this body of believers multiplies, real community transformation will begin to take shape. This is not something that happens quickly, and transformation is always an ongoing process. The goal is for transformation to always be alive and active in the community, all the while, more and more people having access to food, freedom and forgiveness.