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Stories from the Journey: When Dreams Die...and then Multiply

Sometimes dreams come true, but not quite the way you expect…surrendering our dreams to God can be painful or surprising — sometimes both.  Here’s a story about how one man’s dream to have a food truck evolved, grew, and multiplied in remarkable ways:

 

“A few years ago my family and I had a small food truck. We built the food truck ourselves with a friend who is a welder. And once it was built we started selling food: hamburgers, tacos… everything,” Pastor Israel tells me.  “But time went on, and when I started working with Urban Mosaic I didn’t have time for both, so we had to sell the business. It was a bummer we couldn’t continue with the dream, but it was the right decision at the time,” Israel tells me.

Pastor Israel's original food truck, which had to be sold not long after launching.
Pastor Israel serving up meals in the original food truck, a few years ago.

Israel, who is tall, with a round face and kind eyes, continues, “Time went by and one day last year Óscar (UM Mexico Executive Director) reached out to me and said ‘Hey, I heard you used to have a food truck. I have been thinking a lot about the economic impacts of the pandemic. So many kids and families are going hungry right now. Do you think we could build food trucks to provide affordable meals to kids and their families?’”


“’We could totally do that!’ I told Oscar. ‘We could provide affordable food for kids and their families, blessing the communities through a plate of food.’ So, I got to work. I made 
a presentation and put together some design plans,” smiles Israel.

“The vision, above all, was to support families in a time of great economic need.
Together we can do something big: help provide affordable food to kids in communities where many people are going without. The meals we will provide will be at a cost people can afford and, also, with better nutrition.”

One of the challenges was finding enough experienced welders.

“We’ve had all sorts of challenges,” sighs Israel. “One of the first issues was to determine the dimensions of the food trucks. It was also hard to find enough experienced welders to help with the construction; there are a lot of specialty parts and customized pieces to build. But we  overcame those challenges. Today we have a team of warriors, people who want to participate and help with this project, who are willing to work hard for a little pay.”

“The next challenge was to find people who wanted to help run the food trucks: moms, pastors, community leaders… right now we are in the process of recruiting a team of volunteers to help cook and prepare the food, people who believe in the project and want to help. The volunteers will receive a few free meals they can take home to their families. We want to bless them, too.”

Eventually we plan to have five food trucks!

“To start, we are constructing one food truck. We want to test our hypothesis on the effectiveness of the project and make sure that we are estimating costs correctly. The plan is for the food truck to move around to different communities for two days each week. We want to be able to bless kids and families in different neighborhoods and communities.  Eventually, we hope to build two more food trucks, so that each area where UM works in MX has their own truck to use and bless their community. Then, once we have three we plan to make two more, a total of five food trucks!”

 

During the Christmas Light and Life Campaign, funds were raised to help cover the costs of the food truck project, and now… four months later, it’s finally happening. The grand opening of the first food truck is scheduled for April 30th.

Over a dozen people are involved in the construction of the food trucks.

We hope to bless children and their families.

“Of course, with the pandemic it’s been complicated. We have to be careful not to gather too many people, which is why we plan for most of the food to be prepared for to-go orders, so that we don’t have too many people congregating and eating together. We also want to be eco-friendly, though, so we are going to ask families to bring their own dishes, so that we aren’t using plasticware all the time.”

 

“The plan is to bless the children of our communities through a plate of food. The cost for one plate will be 5-10 pesos (about 25 cents). Also if there are kids or families that can’t even pay that, we will feed them for free. That’s part of the plan.”

When we dream with God, it's surprising what can happen.

Children attend a recent Urban Mosaic Kid's Club. Kids like these will be the ones blessed by the Food Truck project.

Despite Israel having to sell his original food truck and thinking that dream had died… years later his dream to run a food truck is coming true – just not how he originally had planned. When we dream with God, dreams often expand and grow in beautiful ways. From one food truck to five, from one community to three, from a few dozen families to a few hundred families… an impact much greater than Israel ever initially imagined.

 

When Jesus said, “let the little children come to me,” I think he had something like this in mind… hungry kids in marginalized areas, coming to a food truck, a place where they feel cared for and safe, a place where they can get an affordable and healthy meal. If that’s not a snapshot of SHALOM, what is?

Jesus said: "Let the little children come to me."
-Mary

Hi! Thanks for reading. If you enjoyed this story of hope and transformation, please consider sharing with a friend, it really helps us spread hope. 

 

Reflect: What dreams have you surrendered to God? Are there dreams God is inviting you to surrender? What’s holding you back? What would it take for you to release? Where are the spaces where you are being invited to dream with God?