This post is a few weeks over do…..but what a finale to our summer we had with our church family from Miami! As everyone’s school year is starting up I thought it would be a fun blog post to share pictures and stories from the ending of our summer days down here…we love our church and love all of our friends we get to see in person when teams come down! Christ Journey’s young adult team was our summer finale…it was awesome!
We spent the week ministering at Club Esperanza and in the surrounding neighborhood. For a few of the days we broke into small teams and walked the neighborhood. We prayed as we walked, met new people and prayed for their needs, entered into homes and prayed for the hurting and for the sick. We actually don’t have any pictures of that time, but you can imagine after you pray for someone and share the Love of Christ with them in their suffering, asking to take a picture isn’t always the appropriate thing to do. A hug, an amen and a God Bless you always seemed more appropriate!
It was a really powerful time though, I remember praying for a man in a wheel chair, a teenager who had tragically lost his parents, a young teenage soon to be mother and a 96 year old grandmother walking along the street who was so full of life it was contagious! One of the more tragic moments was being with a family who had just lost their young child in an electrical accident. God calls us to moments of mourning too, when things don’t make sense, when hurt it so strong, when anger wells up inside…just to be there, to listen and to pray for God to comfort the family was important. It was a hard time, but God was there. And it was good to be there too, as sad as it was.
There were also uplifting moments like spending time with a woman who had recently been living a wild life of drugs and parties even with their children present. She gave her life to Jesus at the Church that meets at Club Esperanza and was baptized only a few weeks earlier. Spending time with her was sweet, giving counsel, hearing fears, loving on her and her family. God is on the move, and it is awesome!
Everyday in the afternoon we also put together some programs for the kids at Club Esperanza. We have children from preschool aged all the way up to high school aged and there was something for everyone which was so fun. This time we were taking pictures all the time so we have the fun photos to share! The kids totally loved the craft where they go to print a Polaroid picture of themselves! Teaching new songs in the classrooms and getting everyone to interact and then just hanging out on the playground afterwards was so much fun. In a short time you just hope to make memories that last, and ask God to be at work in the life of each of the young people you get to spend time with. I am 100% sure that our kiddos at Club Esperanza got some life long Jesus memories that week!
Spending a week at a place it is also nice to get your hands dirty, to do some manual labor and leave a little bit of improvement after you are gone. Club Esperanza got an awesome facelift this week. Our two main buildings were in desperate need of a some new shine and beauty, so the team made it happen! It may have gotten messy at times, especially when all the little kids tried to “help” LOL! But it was so much fun, and yes a little complicated as parts of the wall kept chipping off…but in the end the place looked beautiful and nobody was seriously injured in the process!
As if they hadn’t already done enough, the team joined forces with some of our teachers and planned a two day Youth Event. The first day was a fun time of teaching and games…including a special drama skit for the teenaged audience. It went really well and as it goes with older kids you actually get a chance to get to know them a little better and share life a bit more. I know the young guys and young ladies really appreciated that. The next day we took a trip to Ruby Ranch, spent the entire day together having a blast out at this incredibly awesome place God is having us build in Nicargua….AND all afternoon we partied at the new water slide!!! Mountain Slide 3.0 is legit!!! Check out the videos and the new addition at the bottom of the slide! What a great day!
Thank you Christ Journey Church for all that you did at Club Esperanza! And thank you for all that you do for our family! We love our friendships, we love your support and we love doing God’s great things together all around the world!!! Our family is so blessed.. the team took us on a special treat that last day to one of our kids’ favorite places in Nicaragua, “La Abuelita” restaurant on Laguna de Apoyo. We had lunch at the lake at their super cool water front restaurant and spent the afternoon launching off their docks into the lake. That was such a treat for us!
We love you church family!!!