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Women's soccer sees God everywhere in El Salvador

Sunday, March 17, 2013

The Lipscomb women's soccer team is spending spring break on a mission trip in El Salvador. This update comes from junior Kelsey Reiman.

The ball at our feet, children in our arms, love in our hearts, and God on our minds, the women’s soccer team arrived in San Salvador, El Salvador fully accepting the privilege and challenge we were about to face.

Biting into the native tastes and savoring all facets of the beautiful culture, the team traveled to Pedro Castillo Government School Saturday, March 16. The girls stepped reservedly onto the concrete arena, unsure what to expect or how to serve. However, as the morning drew to afternoon, the children’s smiles could not be missed; they could not be ignored; they could not be taken for granted. We embraced the children and despite the challenging (and dare I say comical) language barrier, they loved us equally in return. Their beautiful faces are forever branded in my memory.

Lipscomb head coach Kevin O’Brien led a soccer clinic with the kids and the Sports Outreach Institute (SOI) staff in drills and games, sharing his love and knowledge of the game with a bustling group eager to learn and follow suit. Leaving the ball behind and putting the whistle away for the morning, team members Melinda Raymond, Caroline Chadwell, and Christopher Klotz opened their hearts by opening their mouths as they each shared the story of their walk with our loving Savior.

At the end of the session although we were sad to leave, the joy of their sprits encouraged us and blessed us for the remainder of our service. In the late afternoon, the team played a mini-tournament at Polle Deportivo, dividing into four multi-cultural teams ready to embrace an evening of fun competition. Though the “amarillo” team reigned victorious and gained bragging rights for the day, we silenced our tongues and ventured into a nearby developing community.

Here is where my journey truly began.

I prayed as I walked, watching every step my feet planted on the rocky dirt road – the same terrain that makes up many of the floors of these people’s homes. I looked through the gaps in their metal walls, in crevices, down alleys, over roofs standing at eye level, and through and into each of these places. I looked and saw poverty and destruction and sadness. I looked again and I saw love and joy; hope and God. I saw Jesucristo in the eyes peeking through the gaps, the crevices, and the alleys.

I look everywhere in El Salvador and I see God; I look everywhere and I feel love.

-Kelsey Reiman