June 29 - July5 2019 New Bern NC
2018 Swan Quarter NC
June 24-Jul 1, 2017 Hattiesburg, MS
July 5-12, 2016 Zihuatanejo, Mexico
July 4-11, 2015 Hattiesburg, MS
June 28-July 5, 2014 Chattanooga, TN
July 13-20, 2013 Hattiesburg, MS
June 23-30, 2012 Honduras
July 9-16, 2011 Dalton, GA
July 3-9, 2010 Dalton, GA
July 24-August 2, 2009 Omak, Washington
June 28-July 5, 2008 Jamaica
2008 Gulf Coast
2007 Gulf Coast
Sunday, July 10, 2016
Episode V: ZOOhuatanejo
The trend of getting more sleep
continued today as Guillermo informed us that Saturday is traditionally a half
work day. So, breakfast ended at 9:30 this morning, and we left for the
worksite around 10:00 Mexico time (so 10:15). The work for today was
essentially cleaning up the church in preparation for Sunday service tomorrow.
While the people that hadn’t gotten the tour of the city yet finally had their
chance, the other six of us dusted chairs, benches, the platform, and everything
we could get our hands on, and then we did it again.
Something that we’ve been doing on
this trip, that we’ve done before, is have a prayer chair. The team rotates
having one person in a prayer chair for 15 minute intervals, where we can pray
(obviously), write down prayer requests, read scripture, or just be quiet with
the Lord. Occasionally, unnamed team member’s may fall asleep in the prayer
chair, but that is not it’s intended use. What we do doesn’t mean much unless
we have God at the heart of it all, so the prayer chair has been a blessing for
us to keep that in mind and help us understand what’s on everybody’s minds.
There were several hours of chiseling,
sweeping, dusting, sweeping some more, and having fun conversations with the
local church members in broken Spanish.
We have learned that there is no Spanish equivalent to Ginger, and that
several members have been given nicknames (Steve-El Torro, Jay-Pepe). After the tour group got back, we had a
wonderful taquito lunch. There were more church members at today’s work day and
lunch than we had seen before, and it was a lot of fun getting to know them.
One of the members was the church photographer, who wanted to take an
individual picture of each team member and one group photo. If we get past the
sweat and concrete covered bodies and tired eyes, we look pretty good.
Today being a half day, and because
there wasn’t much work to do, we left to go back to the hotel right after
lunch. Pool, napping, gym, tan, laundry, you know the drill. Then we were picked up by Guillermo around 5
for the next puppet ministry. This was
the first time that a puppet ministry was held in this little village, up the
mountain from Ixtapa. We arrived early
enough to put together another rag-tag gang of balloon creatures. Our repertoire now consists of dogs, monkeys,
bears, swords, flowers, and Mexican flying rats (a balloon mouse with a tail
you can snap so it flies in the air).
Those who come to the church presentation when we get back just might
get their choice of a balloon animal.
Bonus: What animal is this
During our time here we got a very good glimpse of the poverty here on
the outskirts of the main city. This
village only has about 3000 people, the kids ran up and down the mountain to
their homes, and there were many stray animals wandering about. At one point during the show, a pickup truck
drove by with a full grown cow tied in the back. Though there is much poverty, the people are
so joyful and we loved getting the time to talk to them. At the end of the puppet show, many of the
adults indicated that they were interested in have a church member come and
talk more with them about the gospel.
Guillermo is looking to place a Bible study in that community to
introduce people to who God is. Please
be praying for those who are seeking to know more and that the church members
will reach out and witness to them.
We ended the day with dinner in a
restaurant in Ixtapa. The food here has
been amazing, and there’s a lot of seafood because Zihuatanejo is a fishing
village. Nathan Bowyer, a seafood fanatic, has been particularly pleased, and
has had such things as filleted fish, octopus, and shrimp. Tonight’s restaurant
was owned by a neighbor of Guillermo, and the food was incredible. Three of our
members’ meals came in a stone bowl, and was a bubbling volcano of queso,
sauce, their choice of meat, and, wait for it, cactus. There was also a special
dinner guest tonight, in the form of the first cat we had seen in Mexico. One
of our members, who shall remain named, Nathan G., had to be reminded that
here, dogs and cats are not considered friends, and he couldn’t pet the kitty.
After our delectable meal, we walked down the street to get some after dinner
gelato, much thanks to the ice cream fairy! The hours of the day dwindling away, we headed back home, and made the
decision that skipping our group meeting and devotional time would be best for
the group and Nate, who is preaching in the morning. That also made for one
happy blogging team (#blogsquad), who will get to bed at a decent hour tonight,
knock on wood. We’ve had a great time in Mexico so far, and as we prepare for
the tail end of our trip, we’re hoping to have more good times and find new
ways to be a blessing to the community here.