July 14, 2013
We spent most of the day in town today. Before heading out, I had about 6 of those apple bananas for breakfast. It’s so easy to get hooked on them because they are so sweet! Although Jodi told me today that they are nothing when compared to the bananas in Guyana...so now she’s got me wanting to go to Guyana just to taste their bananas. :)
In town, I had to run a couple of errands to pick up some items that I needed. I also had to take my dirty clothes to the laundry mat since we haven’t had any running water this week to wash them with. Then, I spent the next few hours online, talking to family (or trying to at least...the internet connection was really slow today. Sorry guys!) and uploading pictures from the trip this week to my blog. That took about 3 hours. I had lunch at Narguila’s...a falafel sandwich, with hummus, lettuce, tomatoes and avocado and a side of french fries. Then I splurged and had a brownie (vegan) and a fresh peach/strawberry smoothie. That really hit the spot on this hot afternoon!
At 4:30, everybody met and we headed back home, stopping on the way to get gas. When we got home, we had supper, then Jodi, Warren and I had an informal meeting about classes, the new student missionaries that will be arriving in a couple of weeks, duties, etc. I found out I’ll be supervising all of the male volunteers, as well as teaching Math (7-8 grades), Spanish Language (3-8 grades) and English (5-6 grades). Classes are supposed to start tomorrow, but that may change still. All schools in Bolivia have been on winter break for the past two weeks, but we heard today that the government has extended that break for another week. If that’s the case, then our break will be extended as well. If not, then we’ll start tomorrow. But we won’t really know for sure until tomorrow when we see if any of the town kids that attend our school show up. I’ll let you know how it goes...
Oh! I forgot to tell you in yesterday’s post that we got a new addition to Familia Feliz yesterday. The mother of one of the toddler’s that Melissa has (and is currently in the process of adopting) showed up yesterday morning before church and left her 3-week old daughter! :( I couldn’t believe it. You always hear of things like this happening, but to see it with your own eyes is so different. My heart broke. The baby looks very sickly. She doesn’t have much color at all. As much as I hate to say it, she almost looked dead. But Melissa is taking very good care of her and has cleaned her up, keeping her well-fed and meeting all of her needs. I’ll keep you posted on her...
Well, time for bed. Gotta get up early tomorrow, as we may have class. I just wanted to thank you all again for your prayers and support...it means more than you know! I, too, am praying for you all. May God bless each of you!
July 15, 2013
Today was a very busy day. It started, as usual, with my morning devotion. Then, at 6:45, Sam, Oriel and I had the guys’ morning worship, followed by breakfast at 7:00. School starts at 7:30 and we were waiting to see how many kids would show up. A good number came, so we had classes today. However, two of the teachers are not here because they had meetings, so it was just Warren and I teaching today. He took grades 3-6 and I had grades 7-8 all day. (Starting tomorrow, though, we’ll be changing classes so I’ll only be teaching Math, Spanish and English.) I only had 7 students today (I think there’s a total of 13 students in the 7-8th grades). That was marvelous! I’m used to having 180 students, so I almost didn’t know how to react with so few. :)
Things went really well, though we had a little rough start. Two of the girls had decided they were not going to do anything in class today. I’m not sure if it’s because their teacher has changed or what, but they just sat there, wouldn’t participate, answer any questions, do what was asked of them, etc. So I had to have a talk with both of them. Sandra, who lives here at the orphanage and who has never given me any problems, understood quickly how things were going to be and her attitude changed immediately after our conversation. However, with Anait, the other girl whom I had never met before this morning, things weren’t so easy. I talked to her alone for about 10 minutes and she refused to look at me, respond, anything. She said she didn’t want to and therefore wasn’t going to. Well, you can guess how well that went over with me. :) I had to kindly, yet very firmly, remind her that she was the student, I am the teacher and she has no say-so whatsoever as to how things are run in the school. I told her she was not going to be disrespectful and was going to do what was asked of her or else she would not stay in the classroom. There’s a whole field that has to be cut and cleaned at the rear of the property...she is more than welcome to spend her 4 hours a day there working with Samuel and Oriel. (That’s one good thing about being a private school...we can dictate how the kids spend the school day...:) ). So the choice was hers. Guess which one she chose?! She decided to stay in class. She kept her head down on her desk for the next ten minutes or so, but after that, she started taking notes, participating, giving answers, etc. By the end of the morning, you couldn’t tell there had ever been an issue. Crazy, huh?! No matter where you go in the world, there are always kids that will try to push the limits and see what they can get away with. Hopefully that solved this problem and I won’t have to have this conversation again. (Fingers crossed! :) ).
After school was out, we had lunch. Then I went and looked at the only house on campus that is unoccupied. We’re trying to have all of the male staff in one house (a guys’ dorm, per se) and I had to decide which house I wanted...the one I’m living in now or this other one. The unoccupied one will be better. It has two bedrooms downstairs, a living/dining area, a small kitchen and a bathroom. It also has two lofts upstairs. So it has more sleeping quarters than my current house. And since there will be 5 staff and 4 boys, plus myself, we need all the space we can get. So this week, I’ll work on cleaning it up and getting it ready for us to move in to (probably next week). I also have to make a schedule for morning and evening worship at our house, as well as kitchen duties (since we’ll be eating with the girls, it’s only fair for us to help out in the kitchen). Warren is going to give me the afternoon work schedule for everyone (all the kids and staff work on the grounds from 2-4pm every day) and Jodi will give me the church services schedule and I’ll make a master schedule for all of the guys, so they will know exactly what they are supposed to do and when.
After checking out the house, it was time for the afternoon work. We had four groups...Warren’s group was working in the garden, Juan’s was cutting grass and clearing that back field, Jodi’s group was drying some of the rice that was harvested a couple of months ago and my group was working on odd jobs on the grounds. Sam and Oriel were working on the greenhouses by themselves. We divided all of the kids up and got busy. The kids will work in their respective group for a week and then rotate, so they will work in all areas over the course of the month. Today, my boys and I raked up and burned the grass that had been cut on the path leading to the back field. We were able to finish about half of it today by 4. We’ll do the other half tomorrow.
After working, I made the boys some lemonade. It was quite hot today and we needed something refreshing. Then, Sam, Oriel, Velissa and I took three of the boys to get more oranges. We got 300 more oranges and a few more coconuts.
We came home and while the girls were finishing preparing supper, I exercised a bit. Trying to work that back into the schedule. Then it was supper time.
After supper, we had to take several empty barrels to the creek to fill them with water (since the water is still out). We hooked up a pump to a motor and was able to fill them very quickly. Then, Sam and I had to fix a problem with the electricity in his house. And that finally concluded the day! It’s now 8:00 and I’m pretty tired! After I finish this entry, I’ve got to prepare classes for tomorrow before having my worship and hitting the sack. I’m going to sleep well tonight!
It was a good day, though. Everyday I’m learning something new, either about the kids, about myself, about life or about God’s love. I am truly blessed beyond measure and praise the Lord for this opportunity to be here!
Good night all! God bless and remember....
July 16, 2013
Today was another full and busy day. I followed my morning routing (personal devotion, male staff devotion, breakfast) and then headed to school. Today we started having the students change classes. This was a totally new experience for them and while some really liked it, others vocalized their discontentment with the new arrangement. But no worries...they’ll get used to it. :) I started out teaching Math to the 7-8th graders. They are a good bit behind where they should be...especially when compared to the curriculum for 7-8th graders in the States. Some still have a problem with their times tables. So we spent the class reviewing basic multiplication and division. I also had to teach them how to work out their problems and show their work. Evidently that’s not something they do here, as none of them have ever showed their work in solving math problems. I have a feeling it’s going to be a long process to get them where they need to be. Please keep this in your prayers.
Next, I taught the same 7-8th graders language (Spanish grammar). We’re reviewing/learning (for some) the parts of speech and how to identify them in sentences. My third class was language (Spanish grammar) with the 3-4th graders. This was the class I was most worried about simply because I’ve never taught elementary age kids before. But it went pretty good. We’re learning basic parts of speech (nouns, verbs). The challenging part is there are a couple of students in this class (as well as in the other classes) that cannot read. So we’re going to have to figure out a way to teach them to read and keep them caught up with class. Jodi and I were talking about this tonight and will be trying to come up with some ideas to put into place. Again, prayers are appreciated.
My fourth class was language with the 5-6th graders. I’ve been warned that there are several kids in this group that like to misbehave...so I went in strong with them and really laid down “the law” and their expectations. They did very well, though. I only had one little incident with one of the kids. Since I don’t know all the kids yet (as some are externals and don’t live on campus), we were going around the room and introducing ourselves. When I asked him what his name was, he wouldn’t answer. I asked three times and got no response. That really aggravates me...the indifference. So I asked one more time, to which he responded “I don’t know...I don’t remember my name.” So I had him leave the room and wait for me outside and I would help him to remember his name. :) I got the class started on an assignment and went out to talk with the student. Like with the other students yesterday, I let him know what the expectations are and that he will comply with them. If he doesn’t, he’ll spend the next week or two in the field working instead of in class. I didn’t talk to him in a threatening manner, but I did let him know that he is going to do what was asked of him. This is a private school and being here is a privilege, not a right. So, I gave him a choice...we can do things the easy way or we can do them the hard way, but either way, things will be done my way. We can either start over and act like this incident never happened and go and have class or he can go to work. He then said he’d like for us to start over. So I extended my hand and introduced myself. He shook my hand and said, “My name is Wilder.” He then proceeded back into the classroom and did everything that was asked of him without any problems. I’m starting to see that a lot of the kids like to get away with as much as they can and like to push the limits. We’re gonna have to nip this in the bud quick-like.
My last class today was English with the 7-8th graders again. That went well. Then, the school day was over and I went and had lunch. After lunch, Warren and Jodi had to go into town to send some emails. So Sam, Nickisha and I were in charge of the work session from 2-4. We divided up the kids and headed out to our projects. We had more projects than adults, so Sam and I had to go back and forth between two groups each, so I did a lot of running around the campus today. We got a lot accomplished though.
At 5:30, Velissa and I went jogging and then did some cardio exercises when we got back. Then, we had supper and I headed to take a shower. It was a hot day and the cold water felt really good. :)
At 7:00, Sam, Oriel and I had our evening devotion and at 7:30, we had a general staff meeting. That went well. Warren updated us all on some things and some changes that will take place. He also told us about the student missionaries that will be here in about 3 weeks and about some of the goals we have for Familia Feliz and the students. We finished with prayer and headed to our respective homes for the night.
I’m pretty tired, so I’m going to close out now so I can have my devotion and head to bed. The alarm clock is going to go off all to early in the morning.
Thank you all again for your prayers! Please keep them coming. The kids need prayer, the staff needs wisdom, patience and guidance and we really need to get this water situation solved so we can have a reliable source of running water. Also, we found out today that one of the most faithful donors Familia Feliz has had, who has been consistently giving a sizable donation every month for the past 8 years, is no longer able to continue. So we’re losing that steady monthly income. But I know that God is Faithful and will provide for all of our needs. I’m excited to see how! Again, please keep us all in your prayers. Thanks again! God bless you!
July 17, 2013
I’m starting to get used to getting up earlier again... though I must admit I do miss sleeping until at least 7:00! School went very well today. No problems with any of the students, other than 8 of them not doing their homework. But not to fret...I told them today if they come to class without their homework two times, they have to work in the fields or garden during school hours everyday for a week! :) Two kids came up to meet tonight to assure me that they’ve already completed their homework. :) Evidently previous teachers have let them turn in homework whenever they finished it...there wasn’t a set deadline that was enforced, so I’m having to change that. I may have to make an example out of one of them, but then everyone will be a “believer.”
After school, we had lunch and then the kids went to work from 2-4. I didn’t join them today because I had several things to do for school and to get ready for the new volunteers. I spent most of the afternoon making worship schedules for my older students, worship schedule for my male staff and kids that will be with us, kitchen duties schedule, as well as making the list of house rules for the guys dorm. I’ve got to get it all together and get it to Jodi this week. I’ll also be teaching a baptismal class starting on Friday of this week. This class will basically be a Bible study class for those kids that have recently been baptized. So I prepared for that class as well. Then, I was able to make a special treat for the staff....peach cobbler! That’s Jodi’s favorite dessert and one of Warren’s as well. And since the oven was working today, I thought I’d take advantage of that. It was a new recipe, so I wasn’t 100% sure how it would turn out, but it turned out very good! There wasn’t a bite left over, so I guess everyone enjoyed it. :)
By this time, it was time for supper. Then, we had about an hour before prayer meeting. I took a shower and got ready for church. The church service was really nice. Jodi was in charge of it...but right at the start, she asked me if I would translate, so I was up there with her the whole time. She talked about the importance of daily prayer...both for thanksgiving, as well as for making our requests known. We took praise reports, then divided into groups of six to offer prayers of thanksgiving. Then came back together, sang a hymn and then took prayer requests. We then got back into our groups and prayed again. It was very nice to see and hear the children pray. Their prayers are so sincere and, if I may say so, quite eloquent. They were very detailed. I love to hear them pray.
After church, my little buddy Charlie came running up to me and gave me a big hug. He insisted that I carry him back to his house. I gladly accepted...but let me tell you, this little boy is heavy!! He’s 5 years old, but very stocky and big-boned. But he has the cutest smile you’ve ever seen! :)
A little later, I met with Warren and Jodi to talk about the plan for Friday, since the school schedule on Friday is a little different. The students have a lighter schedule on Fridays (music, P.E., art, etc.). On Friday, we’re also taking the 7th/8th graders to a local sugar cane farm for them to see how the cane is harvested and processed. I might join them, as I’d love to take sugar cane juice. And Friday I don’t have any classes to teach, so I’m free to go. But I’ll have to see if anything else comes up.
Sunday, Warren and I are heading back to Santa Cruz to do the next step in our visa process. I’m not looking forward to the ride there, as it’s going to take about 24 hours to get there. :( But, such is life sometimes. So I won’t be able to call home on Sunday, as I’ll be traveling. But I’ll try to get into town before then if I can. If not, then I’ll be able to do it from Santa Cruz.
Well, more tomorrow. It’s bedtime now. God bless!
July 18, 2013
Today was another good day...busy, but good. School went well. Didn’t have any problems with kids acting up in my classes. I did have three students that didn’t do their homework for the second time this week, as well as one student did skip his last class, so those four will not be in class starting tomorrow for about a week. They’ll be spending their mornings working in the garden, in the shop, in the back field, cleaning classrooms, cleaning the campus, etc. The idea is to make them a little miserable with all the work so they’ll prefer to do what they’re supposed to in class. Although I knew a few would try to push the limits, I was hoping we wouldn’t have to make an example out of anyone. But at least now all the students will see the consequence of not doing what they’re asked to do and hopefully it will deter others from following the same footsteps.
So, a couple of days ago, Warren told me I’d be in charge of all the male staff on campus and gave me title, “Dean of Men.” Well, today I got a couple of more “titles”. I’m now principal over the upper grades! I’m still not sure how that happened. Warren has also placed on as “head” of a few other committees. I’m going to stop asking him any questions because every time I do, I get more responsibilities. :)
I spent the afternoon grading papers, planning classes and getting things ready for my absence next week. Velissa will be my substitute, so I want to leave everything in order for her. I’ve already talked to the students about my expectations for their behavior while I’m gone. They also know that if they don’t do the homework or classwork next week, they’ll be working instead of being in class too. (Really trying to nip these problems in the bud.) Warren and Jodi need me to go into town tomorrow to run some errands, make some copies, pick up some supplies, etc. so we went over all of that this afternoon as well. I have a whole list of things to do and places to go tomorrow! It’s going to be a busy day. Before heading to town, though, I’ll be heading to the sugar cane farm with the older students.
The peach cobbler was such a success yesterday that Sam got some canned cherries this morning for me to make a cherry cobbler today. So I made two small pans of it. It turned out really good too, except for one small thing...so evidently they don’t pit the cherries here in Bolivia. I didn’t know that, as I’ve never seen canned cherries with the pit. So I didn’t know to remove them before making the cobbler...so we had to take the seeds out of each cherry as we were eating it! :( But everyone still liked it and finished both pans. Jodi told me I better not come back from town tomorrow without more peaches to make a peach cobbler for Sabbath afternoon! :) Hopefully I’ll be back in time to get it made before Sabbath starts.
We had supper, then I finished some odds and ends from earlier before heading to worship with the guys. Jorge, one of the students that lives on campus, came back today. So he joined us. He seems to be a good kid, but has gotten into a lot of trouble in the past (fighting, bullying, etc.). He’s run away a couple of times too. He’s been told that if he gets into trouble again, he’s going to be asked to leave and not invited back. Since today was my first time meeting him (after having heard all of the stories about him), I spent some time with him this afternoon and got to know him a little better and had a nice little chat with him. I let him know that he’ll be staying with us in the guys dorm and that he’ll be under my care now (previously he was with Samuel). I went over my expectations and the rules again. I don’t want him to be expelled. I really think he can do better...he just needs some guidance and consistency. He’s really kinda opened up to me already and has wanted to spend time with me. I’m praying I can be what he needs and help him to be what he needs to be. I told him he better behave while I’m gone next week....I don’t want to come back and find him not here. He said he would behave and will be here when I get back. Keeping my fingers crossed...:)
We also have a former staff member here again. Noel was a student here previously (I believe) and then worked as a staff member. He’s in college now and is on break, so came to spend a week here. Melissa brought him to me this morning to introduce us and to see where I wanted him to sleep, etc. We got him set up in a room and he joined us for worship tonight (and will be joining us for his stay here). He’s a really nice guy and seems to have a big desire to serve God. I’m looking forward to getting to know him better in the short time I’ll be with him.
After worship, I got things ready for tomorrow, had my personal devotion and am writing this entry. Now, I’m heading for bed. One good thing about these busy days...no trouble falling asleep at night!! :) Oh! A praise report...we’ve had running water for the past two days!! Not sure what has happened to cause the change (actually, I do know...God has heard and answered our prayers!!), but it’s been really nice to enjoy running water again! Thank you, Lord! And thank you all for your prayers.
Good night and God bless! Maranatha!
July 19, 2013
Today was another FULL day! After worship and breakfast, I headed to the school. I needed to talk to the other teachers for a moment, as well as make sure that my 4 students went to work today instead of to class. Then, all of the 7-8th graders loaded up on the truck and Juan, Nickisha and I took them down the road to the sugar cane “plant”. I put that in parenthesis because I use the word loosely. There was one large, wooden, homemade manual mill with which they extract the juice from the cane. The mill was very impressive, especially knowing that this very humble, poor family built it with their own hands. Everyone took turns pushing the long “handle” around in circles to move the mill and extract the juice. After a few minutes, I got to finally taste the “fruit of my labor”...my first glass of sugar cane juice! It was very good! Really sweet...the canes were quite mature, so they had longer to sweeten up. We were there for about an hour and a half milling the canes and brought home about 2 gallons of the juice for those that couldn’t go. All of us that went were able to drink as much as we wanted there. I did have to handle a disciplinary problem with a couple of the students while we were there, but it was still a very nice and educational trip. I learned a lot...plus, I got a really good workout! (Rick...you’d be proud! :) ). It was tough to push that handle around! Really worked your calves and legs!
After we were done there, we headed back to school to drop off the kids for them to finish the school day on campus. Then, Juan and I headed to town. I had a very long list of things to do in town today! (Make bank deposits, airmail receipts to the mission office in Santa Cruz, make some phone calls, pick up supplies, pick up some food, email the incoming student missionaries, print off documents and make about 800 copies, go by the pharmacy, and a few more.) It took me about 7 1/2 hours to get it all done! But I’m very glad I was able to do everything. Plus, I saw a blue and yellow macaw and a monkey while in town today! :)
I made it back just in time to get two pans of peach cobbler made for tomorrow before Sabbath. Jodi pretty much threatened me if I didn’t make peach cobbler for tomorrow. :) We had worship, then I loaned my computer to Juan and Emy for the boys to watch two Nest Bible videos. The kids love them and it’s a special treat for them. Then I put together the order of service for church tomorrow and let everyone know their assignments. Finally, I was able to come home, take a shower and get off my feet for a little bit. They were very appreciative! :) I did find two interesting little friends in the bathroom when I went in. I’ll post pics below. :)
When I got back, Jorge came running up to me as soon as he saw me and pretty much stayed by my side the rest of the night, until I came to my house. For some reason he’s taken to me over these past two days and we have a really good relationship. I’m glad he’s comfortable with me. I really want to try and help him get on the right track. It’s obvious he’s looking for affection and for a role model. I pray I can be a part of that. He asked me tonight how long I was going to stay here. I told for at least a year, but I wasn’t sure...it’s in God’s Hands. He told me he never wanted me to leave. :) It was a really good moment. Definitely makes all the work and sacrifices worth it! As do all the hugs the kids give me. They are more of a blessing to me than they know. And it feels really good to do something good to help others, to be a positive influence and to allow God to use you. When I look at these kids, I see so much love, but also, so many needs. Each one has a story, a past that they have to deal with. And while all of their basic needs are the same, the deeper needs are all different. As I think on this, I am so glad we have a Heavenly Father that never abandons any of His children (there are no orphans with God!) and that can meet each and every need in the perfect way for each of His children! It’s a wonderful, comforting and hope-filled thought.
Oh! I wanted to update you all on the baby that was left here last Sabbath. I’m very happy to say that she is doing MUCH better!! She looks great! Her color and complexion has improved 200%. She looks healthy and happy. She is eating well, sleeping well and is doing much better than when she was dropped off. The mom did show back up a couple of days ago and wanted to take her back, but DFACS (well, the Bolivian version of it) didn’t allow that. The lady is 21 years old, has a 5 year-old daughter that she gave up to her mother, an 18-month old son that Melissa has (because the mother gave him up) and this newborn, which she gave up as well. She’s also had two abortions. So the case worker has said that she won’t go back with the mom if at all possible. It wouldn’t be a safe and stable environment. Melissa is looking to adopt her, along with her brother. There’s a lot involved, though, so we’d appreciate your prayers, that God’s will would be done. Thanks. I haven’t told you the baby’s name yet, because it hasn’t been decided yet. :) Melissa likes Liliana, but none of her kids like it. They like Lian. So it’s up in the air. I’ll let you know what’s decided when I know. And I’ll try to get pics of her to post, so you can see this precious little girl.
God bless you all! Happy Sabbath!
July 20, 2013
Today was another wonderful Sabbath! We all attended church on campus at Familia Feliz today. After breakfast, I made sure everyone knew what part they were playing in Sabbath School and in church service. I taught the adult class. We had some very good discussions. Warren had the sermon today and, as has been the case every time so far, he did a great job! He had a little “surprise” for me though...I had to translate his sermon for him! :) It went well, though.
As soon as church was over, I had two “manna moments.” (That’s what I call those instances when God just blesses me in a special way when I least expect it.) Armando, one of the boys I watched the first week I got to Familia Feliz, ran up and gave me a BIG hug! He had a big smile on his face and held tight for a long time. Then, Charlie, Melissa’s 5-year old adopted son (who usually sits with me during the services we’re together) also gave me a big hug and told me something I won’t soon forget. He said, “I used to have two friends, but one left (Raul, the other volunteer that left a couple of weeks ago.) and now I only have one friend and it’s you.” Made me feel really good! :)
After church, we changed clothes and headed for lunch. Once again, Jorge was my shadow all day. He got into a little trouble in Sabbath School because he wasn’t doing what he was asked to do. So we had a talk about that and the importance of obeying and being reverent in church. He was very upfront and honest with me in telling me what he did wrong. After our talk, I had him go and apologize to Nickisha (his Sabbath School teacher), which he did very willingly and sincerely.
After lunch, the kids wanted to watch a bible story, so I got my computer out and put on a few Nest Animated Bible Story videos. They really like those!! After that, Jorge, Moisesito and I went for a little hike in the jungle on our property. We didn’t go very far, but had a really good time. We found a vine hanging from a very tall tree and took turns swinging from it (Me Tarzan! :) ). Then, Jorge wanted to see who could climb the vine the highest. I was never good at climbing ropes in school, so I was a bit concerned here. Moisesito went first. I think that boy is part monkey, because he shimmied up that vine really quickly and got about 10 feet up. Then it was Jorge’s turn. He only made it about 6 feet because he started laughing and lost his grip. The pressure was all on me know...I really didn’t want to be shown out by a 6-year old! :) Thanks to Rick and all the pull-ups and push-ups at the gym, I wasn’t! I made it about 15 feet up, then figured I better head back down as I wasn’t 100% convinced that the vine would hold me up very much longer. After “monkeying around” for about 30 minutes, we headed back home to get ready for worship.
We all had worship in a circle, as usually on Friday and Saturday evening. We sang about 10 hymns I guess. These kids love to sing. Again, Jorge was on one side of me and Charlie on the other. Right after worship was over, I had another “manna moment.” At the end of worship on Friday and Saturdays, everyone walks around the circle and wishes everyone a happy Sabbath or happy week (depending on if it’s Friday or Saturday) and shakes their hand. Well, when Jorge got to me, he shook my hand and then threw his arms around me and gave me a hug. It may not seem like much to others, but it meant a lot to me...especially knowing what I do about Jorge. So I was very blessed today!
After Sabbath, we went to eat supper. Warren and I talked about the school, plans for classes, the incoming student missionaries, dorm arrangements, etc. I’ve got to come up with the sleeping arrangements for the male volunteers and the four boys that will be under our care. I’ll work on that this week. I did find out that Jorge will be living with me though. Warren wants him to have a more stable and consistent environment. So I’m very excited about that. :)
After supper, I had a million and one things to do. I’m leaving here at 6:15 in the morning to head to Santa Cruz, so I had to pack for the trip, finish planning my classes for the week, give lesson plans, etc. to Velissa and go over everything with her. I also got called over to Melissa’s house to help them with a couple of things, so I didn’t finish until very late. It’s after 11:00 and, for those of you that know me well, you know it’s way past my bedtime...especially when I have to get up early the next day! So good night all...until tomorrow!
God bless you! Maranatha!
July 21, 2013
It’s 8:54pm and I’m on the bus to Santa Cruz. I’ve spent all day traveling. I left Familia Feliz around 6:30 this morning and traveled from Rurre to Trinidad by car. We left Rurre at 7:30 and got to Trinidad just before 4:00. It was a long trip! Then I had to get to the bus station to get my ticket to Santa Cruz. When I got there, I felt like a piece of fresh meat in the middle of a pack of vultures! No sooner had I gotten out of the taxi than I was surrounded by men trying to get me to pick their bus company to travel with. I mean, there were 4-5 men all talking to me at the same time, trying to out-do the others. I couldn’t help but laugh. :) I finally picked one, got my ticket, then took a moto-taxi to a nearby hotel that had a restaurant where I could get some vegan food. They had free wifi, so I was able to check my emails and make some phone calls. I got some very sad news though...my sister-in-law’s grandfather passed away last night. He had cancer. While I’m glad he isn’t suffering anymore, my heart is heavy for the family. I wish I could be there for them. Please keep Jenney and her family in your prayers as they go through this difficult time. This is yet another reminder of how fragile life is, as well as of our hope in Christ. I eagerly await the day when there will be no more death, pain, sorrow or tears. Even so, come Lord Jesus!
We’re scheduled to get to Santa Cruz around 6:30 am. I’m going to try to get some sleep now. It’s been a long day.