Initial Reflections from Madrid

Me, standing outside of ancient Toledo

Many of you know I just returned from a 10 day trip to Spain. MANY thanks to those who supported and prayed for me on this trip!! Every time someone asks me about how my trip went, I find myself bombarded with 1000 memories, so many different emotions and thoughts – and then all I can say is, “It was great.”

Spain is a beautiful country – rich in history and diverse in culture. My breath caught with each turn through the streets of its cities – an architectural feast for the eyes. The streets of Madrid billow with savory scents and the metro resonates with languages from over 80 nations. The world lives in Spain!

Spain is ancient. It was ruled by the Visigoths, the Romans, the Ottoman Empire and then the Catholic kings. The apostle Paul mentioned Spain (Rom 15:24, 28) as one of his hopeful destinations. Although the Roman Catholic Church claims he did, there is no historic evidence that he ever made it to Spain. And, it is one of the only nations in Europe without a documented revival.  “In 1492 Columbus sailed the ocean blue…” and Spain sanctioned his journey. In the same year 200,000 Jews were expelled from the country.
Mint Tea & Arabic Lessons

Today, it has a population of 47.27 million people – 80 nations are represented within its populace, including over 600,000 North African immigrants. Most people are agnostic or atheist – there is also an ever-increasing population of Muslim believers. Only 1% of the population identifies itself as knowing Jesus. One percent. You could spend all day wandering through Madrid and not pass one person who knows Christ! This knowledge made me feel like I was running a marathon through molasses.

I met some incredible people. A young Moroccan mother of two left a deep impact on my heart. She was always warm and friendly – greeting me in Spanish (both of our second language) and kissing my cheeks three times (the traditional Moroccan greeting). One day, she taught our team some basic Arabic and made us some Moroccan mint tea… she also shared her faith with us. She is a devout woman with true conviction and a desire to please Allah. I couldn’t help but be reminded of Cornelius (Acts 10). My prayer for my new friend is that in her desire to serve God, she will find a relationship with Jesus.

Throughout my entire trip the Lord continually led me to this one passage – Matthew 9:35-38. For the first few days of the trip, verse 36 kept coming to mind “When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them because they were confused and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.” On our third day, we spent some time in a prayer room overlooking La Puerta del Sol, one of Madrid’s busiest plazas, and as I looked out over the plaza – I saw hundreds of people wandering in different directions – and I began to weep. In verse 37-38, Jesus said to his disciples, “The harvest is great, but the workers are few. So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send more workers into his fields.” This was the resounding message of this trip for me…

Jesus, the world lives here… but where is Your Light?
Awaken the hearts of Your People, send more laborers to Spain.

La Puerta Del Sol - "Sheep without a shepherd"

Outdoor mall in Madrid