Thursday, June 28, 2012

River Day

washing clothes
We had a wonderful time at the river this morning!  We got to play with the kids, learn how to wash laundry by hand, and wash the kids' hair.  Many of us gave the local women a big laugh as we (mainly futilely) washed our clothes in the river under their supervision.  While some were washing clothes, the rest went out and played frisbee in the river with the kids.  Once all of the clothes washing was done, we went to a more shallow part of the river to wash the children's hair.  Since about the age of 2, most of the kids are required to do their own bathing, so they enjoy having someone else scrub their head.  Physical touch is not something that the kids get much from their mother or their father (if he is around).  We were encouraged to take the kids in and really show them they were loved by taking the time to really scrub their hair and comb and braid the girls' hair.  The boys were more reluctant about having us wash their hair, but some let us and they really seemed to enjoy the head massage.  Afterwards we spent about another hour playing with the kids in the river.
washing hair
After the river we came back to the compound to eat lunch with another couple of children.  These boys were brothers and are a part of a street kids ministry that is based here.  One of the missionaries on this team focuses on children who work the streets, often dealing drugs.  These children are a lot less trusting than the kids of La Fe since they generally are not supported by anyone, but have to fend for themselves.  The missionary does not just give to these children, but tries to show them the love of Christ through other ways.  It has been explained to us that we do not want to be seen as 'Walmarts' but instead as people who love the children unconditionally.  The lunch that we had with the kids today is more of a privilege for them instead of something that we 'owe' them.  They are required to let the guests go first, and they have to wash their own dishes.  Please pray not only for these children, but for their families, who the missionary is ultimately trying to reach.
Following lunch, we stayed at the compound and helped with needed jobs such as installing ceiling fans, reinforcing bunk beds, and other small jobs.  Some people also had the opportunity to learn how to make tortillas from the lady who made them for our meal tonight.
Tonight we had every member write a couple of sentences about how this week has had an impact on them, and we would like to share them with you!
Jay: We've already been more involved with the local people than on any Calvary missions trip I've been on. Praise the Lord for protection from the heat and for healing Mike J.  The Honduran people, poor as they are, are very friendly and welcoming.
Austin:  I look at the sense of community that exists in this much poverty and it is incredible.  An exchange of stark poverty and community, and wealth and individualism.  True community can exist within areas of success and wealth, but not like the community in La Fe.
Lisa:  What a wonderful Calvary team God has put together...different gifts, different personalities, one body!
Nate:  Everybody here, the locals, the missionaries, and the crew, have been so nice and encouraging.  This has been an amazing experience.
Tom:  Street kids are being loved with the gospel.  I told one of them that God is like re-bar- He gives us strength inside.
Mitch:  None of the kids really like me. (editorial comment: Not true!)  I enjoy trying to be crazy even when the kids look at me like I'm silly.
Ginger:  This week God has shown me how to be content with little, through the people of La Fe.  They are so joyful even though they have so little.
Mike J:  The people of Honduras live in a culture of mostly unbiblical, sinful lives.  Dedicated people try to love them unconditionally, while battling poverty, lust, and little education.  It's very sad.
Marica:  You can send supplies.  You can send money.  You have to send people to supply the real need-love.
Emily:  This week has been all about unconditional love.  Seeing all the kids, what they have and don't have, and still being content.  It's amazing and has definitely brought me closer to the Lord.
Megan:  God has greatly blessed me so far on this trip.  I have loved being able to spend time with the local Honduran kids and families.  I also love the way their faces light up when I practice my Spanish with them.
Mike L:  Honduras is definitely a land of dramatic contrasts.  The beauty of the mountains at sunrise or the local river in La Ceiba/La Fe contrasts with the dire poverty.  Overall, this trip working in La Ceiba has been very rewarding, and we pray God's blessings on all the ongoing efforts here.
Gwen:  The little boy who has touched my heart is Dandrie.  He is about 12 years old.  He is often seen consciously caring for his 1 year old brother, Elke.
Ask us about this when we get back...
Jeff:  It's been an easy and difficult week-easy to love the children, who are bright, energetic, and friendly, but difficult to see the people in very stark conditions, both physically and spiritually.

Tomorrow is our last day of construction, and we will be spending the afternoon helping with the ESL class in La Ceiba.  Please pray that we will be content with the work that we finish, and that we will continue to show God's love to the children tomorrow.
Thanks for the comments, we can't wait to tell you all about the trip!  There is so much more to tell!

1 comment:

Bryan Wright said...

What the team members shared about their week really touched my heart.
Thanks. I was meditating this morning on the word 'Le Fe'--
The Faith and on the poverty you are seeing each day--materially and spiritually.

This is the verse from James 2:5 that the Lord brought to my heart:
Listen, my beloved brethren: did not God choose the poor of this world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom which He promised to those who love Him?

I am praying with you that although there is much poverty in La Fe and surrounding areas, that the Lord will make that community
Rich in Faith!!!

Your service in Christ's Name has been a real blessing to me and to many!

Pastor Bryan