Team Porto Alegre has truly been blessed with two wonderful translators. One of them, whose name is Timóteo, has written the post you are about to read. I hope you’ve been enjoying the posts from varying students; we’ve enjoyed sharing. But, we realized that our “team” is much more than the crew that flew from Atlanta. So, without further adieu, here are the thoughts of just another teammate.
You could think that the guy who’s translating for Impact in Brazil for the 6th year would already be used to everything that happens during this mission trip, like how it is to be with the students, to go places with them, to share the gospel, to talk with them, and the list goes on. Well, you’d be wrong, just as I was before these two weeks started.
My name is Timóteo (Tim is easier). I’m Brazilian, 20, and, since 2009, I’ve been a translator for Team Porto Alegre. Throughout those years, I met different people, started great friendships, and was impacted by their love, fellowship and commitment. But nothing could’ve prepared me for this year’s class.
I’m really afraid of planning the future with certainty, like saying “This is what’s going to happen next year, I’ll be ________” because the last two times I was this determined and sure, I got a really big NO from God as my answer. First, when I didn’t get into college, and second, when I could not apply for Impact in 2012, because of some visa problems. And even though I have some plans, I’m always scared it will go wrong.
During this last week I saw such friendship, love, and godliness among the students towards each other and also towards me; it really touched me. As I saw them praying for each other, sharing their struggles, spending time alone with God, serving and so much more, I started questioning God. Asking him “Why?! Why can’t I be part of something like this?! Why do I always have to lead and invest in people and nobody invest in me?!” Now this was during a debriefing meeting, and some students shared what was in their hearts: struggles, burdens, etc. Then the rest of the students would gather around the one who shared and would pray for them. When the last prayer was over, I was crying; Bekah asked me if I wanted to share. So I told everyone, weeping, what was in my heart: my fear of the future, my questioning, my loneliness. As soon as I finished, everyone gathered around me and started to pray over me, reminding me that I’m not part of an Impact class, but I’ve been a part of 6 different classes, and that God’s been using me in this trip, and so much more!
It was so incredible. I felt God speaking to me, hugging me through the students, telling me “You’re not alone, you’re not by yourself. I’m with you. I love you. I want you.” In that moment I really felt and understood that I am loved. Two students came to me and shared how God had worked in their lives and helped them with the same struggles I’m having – fear, chaos, doubts. Students, that until two weeks ago didn’t know me, were now loving me and reminding me of how God is a perfect Father.
I still have no idea of what the Lord has for my life. My life plans, which were “for sure”, are still burning on God’s altar, as a sacrifice that says “My whole life is Yours! Not just a piece of it, ALL OF IT. I’m yours, I trust You. Do your will in my life!”
Timóteo “Tim” Thober – The Translation Guy