«Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations» (Matthew 28:20).
When I was a little girl, I had a giant atlas. The thick pages were about one meter by fifty centimeters. Each page had a Division of the Church on it, and in the countries, the main productions or industries were marked, in addition to the capitals and some other important cities. Since I loved geography, I spent hours looking at it. I also loved reading mission stories, so the mission and concept of the World Church stayed with me as I grew.
When I got to university, I immediately joined the missionary activities of the department and there I met a beautiful group of people who were totally dedicated to missions. Dr. Abraham Acosta and his family were among them. I began a ministry with Ana Lucila, the youngest daughter, that fascinated us.
Every Sunday, very early when the whole town was still asleep, we met with a group from the Missions Institute to pray. There we presented requests and reasons for gratitude; the leaders of the various groups said something about the different cities they visited, we sang, prayed, and had a short biblical reflection. The segment that I was responsible for with Ana Lucila, after taking into account local needs, was the presentation of our project: «Entering the 10-40 window through prayer.» Every Sunday, we showed pictures of one of the countries in the 10-40 window and spent some time praying for our members in those countries, taking into account the church news and needs in those places.
At that time, I bought a map and marked the different places where I had friends working as missionaries. I still have it and I continue to update it. Having that visual is very useful for me to keep them closer, to pray more, and to remember our mission and dependence on God and on one another.
Ana Lucila, just like hundreds of young people participating in the Institute, is now working as a missionary in one of these countries. I encourage you today go read more about the 10—40 window and to «adopt» a country to pray for in a special way for its needs and perhaps to serve there one day.
Missionaries are often very lonely, and your prayers and messages can also make a difference. Find a way to make personal contact with them and you will see what a rich exchange will happen.