By Marco Del Rosario Rivera, Iowa State student with The Salt Company Ames
I was sitting in the dining hall on our campus on a Friday when I checked my phone and saw that I had received an email from someone I didn’t know. Sarah Day, a leader in our church had contacted me via email. In this email she shared with me how her family had taken in an 18 year old from Honduras. The Day family had been taking Carlos to church and had tried to have deep conversations to see where he was at spiritually. However, due to the language barrier they weren’t able to communicate clearly about spiritual issues together. Since I am from Mexico, Sarah contacted me to help.
Sarah first invited me to the Day household the day before for lunch after church. We thought it would be the least awkward way for me to meet Carlos before going out for lunch with him. That was a great opportunity because I was able to have small talk with Carlos and I saw his interactions with the family. The next day Carlos, myself, and another student leader, Walker (who happened to be Sarah Day’s son) met at El Azteca, a well-known Mexican restaurant in Ames, for lunch. That conversation was one of my favorite gospel conversations to date. Walker was asking him questions like any other time and whenever there was something that Carlos could not explain in English I intervened and told him to explain it to me in Spanish. By giving him the chance to explain himself in his native language, I could learn where he was at spiritually. We talked about what he was understanding through attending Cornerstone church. He also shared beliefs he has from growing up in Honduras. It was interesting because I saw some of the same beliefs that I had from growing up Mexico in him! Because of God’s transforming work in my life, I was able to share the truth of the Gospel toward some of his misconceptions.
Through listening to Carlos, I could interpret and explain his thoughts to Walker. I shared what his beliefs were and why he was believing these things. I am excited for the Day family to continue to invest in Carlos’ life and I hope that I can continue to help wherever needed. Having had the chance to share the gospel in my native tongue was something that overfilled me with joy.