I officially have pieces of my heart scattered all over the globe. When I look back across my travels I see a little plywood house in Ensenada with a neighborhood of kids who love soccer, a quiet seminary campus in the heart of Lima, a small shop-owner on a warm beach in the D.R., a Saturday of summer chores in Jalisco, and the biggest family you ever did see at la reunion in Chile.
I have friends from around the world who’ve touched my heart and taken a piece back home with them to Japan, Germany, Spain, and Saudi Arabia. And I’ve got teammates living in almost every state of the Union.
Sometimes I wonder why.
The mural is done! We painted an apple tree with Mt. Rainier in the background to represent our church in Washington near a Chilean wine palm with the Andes behind. It’s a pretty great representation of the partnership we have had with this wonderful place.
I have to be quick tonight because our host family had a surprise birthday party tonight. All the cousins and aunts and uncles were here in this tiny house! Even grandma.
Today we visited the schools that are part of the IberoAmerican family. The kids were so surprised to see gringos in their classroom!
Our schedule today got a little mixed up when the school called to cancel our puppet show appearance. I was a little miffed at first, because we had practiced for the puppet show, but when the baking workshop began for the women, we were surprised!
We lost! It was very sad. But there is a small chance that Chile could still play in the World Cup, so we will hope for their next game to be better.
Today was a stressful day for me.
Read the rest of this entry »
Today we got to put our training from yesterday to good use with two outreach events. First, we went to the soccer school to play soccer with the local kids. This was interesting because at first they did not want to mix teams. They wanted to play Chilenos vs Americanos, but we asked them to teach us and they came around.
Hurry up and wait, is what we did today.
Today was for travel, and the travel was long. A four-hour flight to Dallas, a three-hour layover, and then a nine-hour flight South to our destination. Praise God we made it safely, but we will need prayers for strength, as a nap is not in the schedule.
First off, I want to thank you for all of your support in prayers and finances. This trip would not be possible without you.
I can’t believe we’re leaving tomorrow!! We have been preparing for this trip for a year now, so it feels a little like Christmas. I wanted to let you know some specific prayer requests before I go. AND it turns out I will probably have nightly wifi access! So, I will try to post a (very short) daily update on our ministry and any further prayer requests. So be sure to check back!
I’ll tell you: the thing I am most excited for on this trip is the time we will be spending as a team. These kids are very special to me as I have seen many of them grow up over several years. We will get some processing time each night, and I will be praying for wisdom and discernment; for God to speak through me to these youth about this experience. Missions were an integral part of my faith journey, so I hope that this trip produces long-term effects not just for the church in Chile, but also in the hearts of the youth on our team (and us adults, too, of course!).