|Fermin Garcia , Pastor
Amistad, San Diego:
Most kids go on vacation to places such as Orlando’s Magic Kingdom, New York to see the statue of Liberty, Hawaii to enjoy the beach, or even Hollywood to see the stars. Though these things were done in our family, what made my vacations great were that they were mixed with seeing people come to know God.
When I was a child, my father, pastor of the largest church in Tijuana Mexico with over 12,000 members, would take us all on vacations, my older brother and a younger sister, my mom and I. We got to travel by car all the way to Florida and up and down the West Coast. We had the privilege of getting to see most of Mexico and Central America. What sights! How exciting!
The difference with my vacations is that in them all my father would travel and preach at different churches or would hold his massive crusades. He would have commitments to preach and I thought that was normal, everyone on their vacation did something with father that related to his job. In Palenque Chiapas, Mexico, in 1976, I was able to see the pyramids and also about 8,000 people who came to the Lord that week.
You may think of vacations such as this as dull, lacking life, yet today as pastor of Amistad San Diego, I remember these times and appreciate all that I learned from my father. I learned that it is great to see people come to know Christ, and it is awesome to see people healed. There is no greater vacation than to enjoy the parks, games, museums, while at the same time serving God. I missed out on nothing. I enjoyed life and had the privilege of knowing many came into God’s Kingdom because my father decided to go to Disneyland and Puerto Vallarta.
I want my children now to know that the purpose of life is not to live it without realizing that many do not know God, but to learn to serve Him everywhere they go. I want my children to travel and see the beauty of God’s creation yet on the way let someone’s life be blessed by that Creator. Now that’s a vacation!