Greetings to all on our last day of Kingdom building in Guatemala! Did you hear that the girls nearly didn’t make it to today after being attacked by bats and mice last night? You could probably hear the screams back in Michigan. We’ve had an incredible week of work, team bonding, and developing our own faith and the faith of our new friends in this beautiful country. Today we were able to slow down a little and catch our breath before we head home early tomorrow morning – wake-up call will be at 3:30am! We started the day with another flavorful breakfast and then some shopping at the PBM “store” filled with native products. Some of the ladies took awhile to decide what to buy from the inventory, but we all did our part to support the local commerce. Later in the morning, we loaded up in the vans for our shortest trip of the week (30 minute drive each way) to visit a large plantation where a variety of products are grown, but mostly coffee. The most interesting part of the plantation was that it also doubled as a resort that specializes in events like retreats, weddings, etc. Just about all of our group embarked on the high ropes course, which doesn’t quite have the safety standards as those in the U.S. – everyone made it through safely and had a great time. We were then treated to an incredible lunch with chicken, steak, corn on the cob, potatoes and salad. After lunch, Dan gathered our group again to share about all the various facets of PBM that go beyond what we were able to experience this week. It was exciting to learn about the holistic approach to ministry and how local leaders are trained to minister to those in the villages where teams like ours have worked. He also shared some of the future visions for PBM and then we all prayed together that God will help the PBM leadership in discerning where HE wants to take them in the years ahead. We were reminded once again that God’s plans are greater than ours, and that He wants nothing more than for us to serve Him with all our minds, hearts, and strength. It’s been a fantastic week of doing that, and we’ll surely never forget it. To HIM be the glory!!
Day 5 started out with a beautiful sunrise, it was such a good reminder of God’s presence as we went into our house dedication day. We had a good breakfast of pancakes and watermelon to get us ready for the day ahead. As 6:30 approached we met with our building group, discussed what the day would hold, and prayed over our families and the dedications that would occur. We headed out to our building sites after this. As we arrived, we started at the first house on top of the hill. The dedication process was explained and we began. The families were given the suitcases our teams had prepared for them and then PBM’s pastors shared a message. As this happened, the rest of our team prayed over the house, sang, and read many passages as the families were hearing God’s Word. At the end of the dedication, each person in the family was given the opportunity to accept Christ. This was a really neat experience, as every single person in every house chose to accept Jesus into their hearts today. After 5 dedications, the team headed back to the base. We arrived back safely and plan to enjoy the night together in the orphanage, playing games, devotions, PIZZA, and more!! Thank you for all the prayers, we couldn’t have made it through today without them.
Today we had breakfast at 5:30 after a late night at a remote village where we held a med clinic and showed the Jesus film. We had a great time interacting with the people and after the film most people made a commitment to Christ. As a team we sang and shared testimonies. It was a great evening. It is so incredible to see God at work here. We had our devotions and we left for our last build day at 6:30. Today was a day of putting stucco on the outside of the house, painting the inside and adding our own personal touches of decorating. The families also put their own touches as well. Everyone came back with a few pounds of stucco on themselves (especially Braden because he deserved it). It was a very fun day and we look forward to dedicating the homes to the families tomorrow. God has blessed us in many ways especially today with awesome weather for the stucco to dry.
We are back at the mission base and the kids are playing capture the flag. We will be eating dinner soon and will be having our nightly devotions later. Thanks for your prayers and keep them coming.
Today we woke up to do our daily devotions on the patio and ate a delicious breakfast of french toast. We prepared sandwiches to eat later tonight while the softball players attempted to play soccer in the base. We will also have devotion time with Anya and eat lunch before heading out to our second medical clinic. We will not get back to the base until late tonight so you will not hear from us until tomorrow.
We woke up earlier today in order to pray for the work we were going to do in La Reyna. After a great breakfast of pancakes with and watermelon (with a bonus of nutella). We took time to do personal devotions with the amazing view off the patio. We set out for La Reyna at 8:00 and arrived at 10:10. We saw the two volcanoes on the way, fuego and agua. (Fuego was the volcano that recently erupted). No need to worry though, there wasn’t any volcanic activity while we were there. When we got there, half of the group started setting up for the med clinic with all of the different vitamins and pills, while the other half began building relationships with the people of La Reyna. The children were full of energy and hard to keep up with! We played wiffle ball, soccer, frisbee, painted nails, and colored. It was hot and sunny out, but no one minded the heat because of how much fun we were having. We were able to pass out medicine and vitamins according to the patient’s needs. After about 125 families received the medicine they needed, the pastor in La Reyna began to speak. Although most of us couldn’t understand him, the people in the village were moved by his words. We sang a few songs in front of the church. Many people accepted Jesus into their hearts as tears poured from their eyes. We were able to pray over them while they were accepting Jesus. After saying goodbyes, our treat for the evening was going to McDonald’s for dinner! By the way, McDonald’s down here is way better! And Bill did a great job driving, even though our heads may have hit the ceiling on a few speed bumps! Thank you for your prayers, and please keep it up as the rest of the week continues. 🙂
Thanks for all the thoughts and prayers thus far. We arrived safely into Guatemala City and to the mission base last night without any travel troubles. All of our bags made it safely through customs even though the airport staff was very suspicious of the peanut butter we brought down for Paradise Bound!
After a few hours of sleep, we started our first construction day in Las Minas. The views were incredible! This village is located on the other side of a canyon from the mission base, so we were able to actually see the mission base from our building sites once we arrived. Hopefully we can get a picture posted of that soon. Everyone got introduced to their families and had the chance to pray over the foundation of the house with that group before getting started.
Thanks to the rain holding off and AMAZING teamwork, we were able to get EXTREMELY far on the houses before lunch. The house frame was up, the window and door were in, the outside sheet rock was hung, the inside drywall was set, and the outside patios were complete! We were grateful for the head start because not even two hours after lunch, the heavy rains started! We wrapped up the day at the build site and made it back to the mission base safely (after a few fun slip ‘n’ slide moments in the mud while trying to make it to the vans!)
Since then, we have had some time to prepare for our med clinic day tomorrow and meet the precious children in the orphanage!
Thanks again for the prayers! We have been blessed with safety and good health thus far, and pray that continues throughout the week. Love you all!
Thanks for joining us!
Prayer does not equip us for the greater work, IT IS the greater work!