This morning was like the other mornings on the trip – we started off with devotions with the elementary kids, then we moved into sorting beans for the children’s food and helping Mario and his team with the construction of the science lab.
Today we had the opportunity to enjoy part of our afternoon at a macadamia farm near where we are staying. Although it is close by, getting there was not an easy task for many in the group, as the macadamia field was on the side of a huge hill and involved a lot of challenging climbing and hiking. While hiking, we found an “arbol avivando” or ignited tree. The bark naturally peels off but, in the sunlight, it looks like it is on fire. Pretty cool. Once we made it up to the farm, we were able to enjoy a meal of grilled beef prepared by the kitchen team as well as learning about the nut farm and how everything is done. We were also able to take part in a prayer that involved the team praying for the school which was visible across the valley from the farm. We were able to see the entire school property while at the farm.
Today’s vacation Bible school was as energetic as usual! There was a slight change in schedule though as the volunteers, Samantha, Genesis, and Fernando and his wife, took over the organization of the VBS for the day. They did a really cool skit (it was in Spanish though, so I wasn’t able to understand it all) about two spies and tied it into the lesson for the day! We still were able to help out by engaging with the kids and playing with them throughout the two hours. Overall, it was another great time spent connecting with everyone and a great opportunity to invest in the lives of children in the community.
In the evening we got the opportunity to go to Luis’ church. Luis is an engineer at CCAF (the school) and works for Global Shore Opportunities. He is also a full-time pastor at a church in Parramos. The service started with worship. I personally find it so powerful to worship in a whole different culture where you can’t understand the words of the song but you can still feel the Spirit and hear God talking to you. It is also powerful to see different people from totally different backgrounds and countries come together and worship together giving praise to one God. The service continued with a message about the intimacy of our relationship with God. The service was amazing and I’m so glad I could be a part of it! After we got home, we ended the day with another “Chimbale” campfire and talked about the stages of culture shock, though we sort of forgot the campfire.
Michael, Klarissa and another student