Guatemala doesn’t know what it’s in for


By Vicki Scott

Our church and household are in the process of getting ready to go on a mission trip to Guatemala.

The trip has been in the planning stages since for about 208 days. I know this because the day I found out about the mission, I started brushing up on my Spanish with Duolingo.

At first, there were second thoughts about the trip because one of their missionaries had been shot and killed Guatemala. Plans changed to not going and then changed back to going because now everything looks safe in the country. There is still nervousness, however. It is not a fear of dying, which is not something I do not want to do any time soon. My fear is hindering any success of our mission, during which we are supposed to build houses.

Small groups have successfully raised enough money to finance the supplies and food. Toys and school supplies for the mission children are in the process of being gathered as well. We’re planning to build a sort of a sample house at the church, where we will understand the process. I heard that the houses are more like sheds but greatly appreciated by the locals. One mission member told me that this is her third time going, and she loves it. She is the photographer and seems to be very good at her job, as she produced thousands of pictures from past trips.

Our pastor is hiring an interpreter to travel with us, which I’m so glad for because even after 208 days, Spanish is not fluently flowing through my brain and out of my mouth.

I‘ve listened to people speak Spanish in restaurants and other public places. Our children tried to encourage me to speak to some of them, but I chickened out. I did speak Spanish to a young lady in Gadsden recently while I was waiting for my eye appointment. She told me I did well but that she wanted to speak English to me. I was told that it was that way in Guatemala, as the locals wish to learn English.

That reminded me of the lady who goes to church with us. She spoke Spanish (although she only spoke English to me) and suggested that if I teach English as a second language at Auburn University, I would become more fluent in Spanish. I never got around to checking on Auburn’s classes, because that was when we thought we were not going on the mission trip. Maybe what little Spanish I know can help me teach some English to folks in Guatemala.

God is in control of the whole situation, and I need to keep remembering that. If my Spanish is lacking, God has another plan for me. I do not want to let Him down. Why am I worrying? It says in the Bible 365 times not to fear. It also says to focus on what is good. We are going on a mission trip, and God has already been pouring out His blessings. Praises and glory to God! Fear is a liar!

“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable, if anything is excellent or praiseworthy, think about such things.” (Philippians 4:8)

Vicki Scott may be contacted at

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