Two Weeks Later

Two weeks later . . .

Life is back to “normal”.  Preparations for Holy Week, laundry, spending time with family, grocery shopping . . . all of the activities that I would have been doing no matter a trip to Guyana or not.  But has anything really changed?

When I come back from a mission trip – whether here or abroad – there’s a period of adjustment for me.  There are moments when I realize how “good I got it”, how we don’t appreciate our blessings, how thankful I am for clean running water . . the list goes on.  Yes, there’s also some frustration with the world around me when I see petty complaints and selfishness.  Then I realize that I can’t point any fingers.  I can be just as petty and selfish.

I have been changed.  I will not forget the faces I’ve seen, the experiences I’ve had, and the love we’ve shared.  I will remember WHY we go with notes like this one written to Jeff:

I am a boy.  I love to play.

I will miss you all the best.

I need you to come back again.

To play with you again.

I am playing football at home with the children.

I love you.

Paul

I will remember that Paul needs us to come back.  He needs to believe that teams will come back and play with him.  I will remember that his home is an orphanage – that “the children” are just like him – in need of love and attention.

And in remembering, I will continue to be changed.

Messy Cross, Preaching and Music

On Wednesday, we continued our work at Joshua House. The children – our helpers – were becoming more comfortable with us and showed us in the hugs they gave and in the gradual conversations. “Miss” and “Sir” were our names and slowly I learned a few names – Paul, Ezekiel, Ram . . .

Tony’s mosaic idea from Tuesday became my project.  Off I went to the hardware store with Andy, our driver, an essential member of our team.  I needed something to adhere the tile to the concrete wall – I mean, how hard could it be to find what we needed?

The task was easy – buy the adhesive, get some chain for the swing sets – 4 eight foot pieces. Well in case you’re wondering, metric is the measurement system used in Guyana.  I was just thankful that I had taught this system when I was a science teacher.  I was so thankful for Andy who made the purchases happen!  I love a good hardware store and let me just say, in Guyana, it’s an experience!

When we got back to the House, I started using the adhesive to put the pieces on the wall to make a cross. I had an idea of what I wanted it to look like but the adhesive was not cooperating. Several children walked over and honestly said that the cross did not look good. Adhesive was running everywhere, glue getting all over me and soon the children deciding it would be fun to put it in others’ hair. I was wishing that my friend Gela was there. She can make art out of anything!

Soon it was time to stop for the day.  I knew that I had started something that I had to finish but I also knew we were leaving Saturday! It was going to take me forever. Project to be continued tomorrow.

Wednesday night, we worshiped at Victoria Methodist Church again. Clemente, our Guyanese team member, arranged the “Gospel Encounter” – a time of music and testimony with my honor to be the preacher. Tony and Pat both gave a witness along with a local Victoria church member. A young woman led the music for about 40 minutes – no words, no plan – just from the heart singing with the keyboard player figuring out what key she was in as she sang. I couldn’t believe how the Holy Spirit took over and worked all of the music together in harmony. I started preaching about 8:00 – service started at 6:30 (or 6:50 local time).

My dear Pine Valley UMC, an hour may not be enough time for us on Sunday!  Just saying.

Another great day!

Thank you, Lord, that even though we may be different, we are really all the same.