Livin' la Vida DOXA
3/11/16 at 01:23 PM 0 Comments

"Water Bozos"

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Every once in awhile, your life’s road crosses paths with the unexpected. This was the case when my family and I took a mini-vacation in Brotas, São Paulo, Brazil. The small town of about 20,000 people is the one of the adventure sport hotspots in Brazil. One day while we were at an adventure company’s office preparing to go rafting, I started asking questions about the company and its owner, and in the process discovered that the owner was also the manager of a rafting team called “Alaya - Bozo d’ Água”. Alaya is the name of his company, so no surprise there. But I wondered, “Why Bozo d’ Água?” An employee explained to me.

In 2002, six local teens decided that they wanted to become the Brazilian rafting champions. These guys, simple and hard-working — most never having graduated from high school, nor having been actively involved in water sports — began training in the local river everyday. The local community was skeptical, to say the least, and some began calling the guys “Bozos d’ Água,” meaning, “water Bozos,” as in, “water clowns.” Undeterred, the team continued to train.

In 2002, against all odds, they placed fourth in their very first tournament, (can you say, “Jamaican bobsled team”?!) and since then all they seem to do is rack up awards! They regularly come in first place in tournaments all over the world. In fact, they have been world champions twice, Panamerican champions four times and Brazilian champions an astounding TEN times! They receive NO funding from the Brazilian government, and only meager corporate support. They often find themselves eating eggs, or rice, or some other simple and cheap fare — meal after meal, day after day — as they compete internationally. And yet they press on. They work hard. They strive for excellence. They face and overcome the challenges. And they WIN! The beat the stew out of everyone, all over the world! A simple bunch of “water clowns”!

Now I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty sure that when compared to these guys, I take A LOT of things for granted. I’m pretty sure that I could do better than I do in just about everything. I’m pretty sure that the challenges in life, whether family, personal, professional, financial or spiritual, are NOT as great as I imagine they are. And I’m pretty sure that if these guys can do what they do, then I can do anything that God wants me to do. (“I can do everything through him who gives me strength.” Phil. 4:13). The world around me may be inclined to consider me a “water clown” in the worst sense — hopeless, helpless, a mere dreamer with no chance of succeeding. But the world would be oh so wrong. (“For the wisdom of this world is foolishness in God's sight.” 1 Cor. 3:19). I am a “water clown” in the best sense: I have a goal, I am part of a team, I live for a cause greater than myself. So it is my goal — may it be your goal as well — to live this life courageously (“When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus.” Acts 4:13), so that the world will see in us “clowns” the radiant glory of Christ (“...we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory...” 2 Cor. 3:18).

From now on, just call me “Brother Bozo”!


I'm João, but you can call me John. Since meeting Christ at age 16, my driving passion has been to glorify Him! I’m a “Great Commission Entrepreneur,” passionate about starting and leading anything — mission agencies, churches, businesses — that helps fulfill the Great Commission. I also love to speak, teach, preach and write about God's glory in all areas of life and among all peoples of the world.

You can contact Dr. John Mordomo (aka "Brother Bozo") at; find out more at; link directly to this blog at; and follow him on:



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