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Serving the least of these, since 1972

My First Missions Trip with Real Life Ministries

In June 2015, I went down to help build a house for a needy family in Ensenada, Mexico with Canyon Lake Community Church. The week prior, I was full of nervous anticipation of what would happen. Would we be safe? Would we sleep well? Would I be able to be of much help? Would we be able to do such a big job with only nine of us? Would the family even appreciate the work Real Life Ministries did for them?

My fears regarding safety and comfort were relieved immediately when I saw the securely gated compound and the rooms with bunk beds (I slept well). Dennis and Debbie and their eight staff/interns, all are such wonderful, welcoming, godly people. This is such a fantastically rewarding ministry. It was great to meet Jessica and hear her appreciation for everyone coming.

Our team of nine seemed so small, but Dennis and Debbie of Real Life Ministries had four people who are skilled in construction and four other hard­working helpers. We set to work, one group laying the concrete slab, the other framing windows and walls and assembling roof trusses. Tired, but happy at day’s end. Then three more days of amazing friendly unity, getting up the roof, the windows, the walls, the electrical, the lathing and two coats of stucco! I would truly not have believed this feat if I hadn’t been there. I was so tired each evening, but so filled with a sense of accomplishment.

One afternoon, I got to go with the girls to shop at the segundas (secondhand stores) and we found a beautiful table with eight chairs for Jessica and her six children.

The presentation of keys to Jessica at job’s end and her family’s awe over everything, along with inspiring messages from Dennis, Paul, and Teresa, resulted in a tearful, heartwarming speech of appreciation from Jessica.

I am so jazzed about this amazing Real Life Ministries! God is truly doing a wonderful work here.

Carol is a member of Canyon Lake Community Church in Canyon Lake, CA. She first participated in our housebuilding ministry, Las Tres Palmas, in the summer of 2015.

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