July 18, 2013: With warm hearts, we have reached the last day of our trip. We started the day with a shopping trip to Humbes Market to get some last minute gifts for our family and friends! Several of our team members had the pleasure of meeting their sponsor kids and enjoyed a great meal at the Pizza Hut as well as a lively trip to the park! This will be the last entry to the blog and we have decided to end it with a brief comment from some of the members of the team. Thank you for following us along God’s journey!
Words could not possibly express the magnitude of growth experienced on this mission trip. I set forth on this journey as a young woman, open and willing to experience a new culture. I am leaving this trip not only as a newly cultured woman but a woman with a heart full of love, mind full of change, and a soul full of Gods’ grace. I have met some of the most amazing individuals in Nicaragua who have welcomed me as their hermana (sister) and hija (daughter). I am blessed to have experienced this side of the world and bond with other children of God! The hearts and spirits of the beautiful children I have encountered will live on in my life and help me to continue the service God has called me to.
Signing out Candace-a.k.a”first class”/”Dulce”
This trip has become one of the best experiences of my life. I failed to see what God had in store for me and cannot adequately express how the people of Nicaragua have stolen my heart. The children are full of love and when I look into their eyes I see the hope of a bright future. Nicaragua is a place in desperate need of Christ and I thank God for people like Pastor Wilbur. Please continue to pray for our partners in ministry and consider sponsoring a child through NRN, so that they will receive the education that they so desperately need. God Bless…
I count it a joy and a blessing to have experienced the love that our friends in Nicaragua have for our Lord Jesus. Their passion shines bright in the midst of various struggles unique to their circumstances. Even so, they praise the Lord with an outpouring of song and prayer that rivals any believer. I pray that as they endure challenges to meet their physical needs that they continue to be fed spiritually and I want to thank our Nicaraguan friends for helping me see and experience our Lord with a new heart. I will always cherish this experience and am pleased to have met new brothers and sisters in Christ.
Before this trip began I had hoped and prayed that I would be able to touch the lives of the families in Nicaragua. I had also hoped that my knowledge of Spanish would help me through the week as well, but I was quickly shown up by Pastor Wilbur’s three year old son, Cristian.
We thoroughly enjoyed our trip and consider ourselves blessed to have experienced such a wonderful culture! Thank you for traveling with us and following along our journey! God Bless!
Today was another great day! Although tired and sore, God blessed us with another day of awesome weather at Halle’s place. It was another sports filled day, but this time it was with the Secondary students of Tabernacle de Agua Vida! The students were beautiful, but tough to relate to, as any teenager would be, but we broke both culture and language barriers with a game of INTENSE kickball! The students ended the day with lunch and another powerful game of baseball! Our team members taught a few of the younger students the basics of baseball and everything fell into place! We then headed home for some rest and preparation for service at Pastor Wilbur’s church. Once again the spirit was alive and well! It was a wonderful experience for everyone! The joyous singing, the endless praise and the overall faith of the members could be felt in many ways! David C. led us in a strong word about suffering and how as Christians we will all suffer, but in doing so, we should bring glory to God! The night ended with our goodbyes, hugs and kisses to Pastor Wilbur’s congregation. It was bittersweet, but God’s love will keep us close to our Nicaraguan brothers and sister forever!
It’s time for a double dose of “The Nicaragua Sports Trip Update!” The spirit is alive and well in Nicaragua!
UPDATE-July 15th, 2013: Another day of waking up in beautiful Managua to do the Lord’s work! After another great devotional from Cecil and David A, we discussed tragedy and struggle and how it has shaped our lives. We ended by talking about tragedies in our lives, and if tragedy and responses to tragedy are universal? Although somber, this was a great way to begin our adventurous day. Most of the day was dedicated to delivering food and other necessities to families chosen by Pastor Wilbur. As a team, we all agreed that this experience was life changing. Being able to go into the homes of the children and parents that we’ve fellow-shipped with for the past couple of days, brought on a whole new perspective to our mission. Most of us agreed that we did not expect to see the living conditions that were presented to us, but it was very clear that we had a purpose for being here…God has a purpose for being here. The food brought smiles and even tears to our brothers and sisters faces, and our hearts were warmed once more! It feels good to help, but it feels even greater to be helping in the name of Jesus…AMEN?
Later that day we had an even better surprise…CHILDREN’S CHURCH! The children led everything! Little Pastor Marcos was filled with the spirit! Child after child came up to the front of the church to lead a song and read scripture, and the adults and other children followed along. We were clapping, singing and dancing all in the name of Jesus! After worship, it was time for the TPCC crew to lead activities. The kids learned the “Oh Happy Day” dance and song in English, and we played a couple of INTENSE games of “Down By the Banks”! The night ended with the children drawing pictures of their families to take home as a gift!
Update-July 16, 2013: To Halley’s place we go!!! But this time with the Pastor Belcer’s kids from Tabernacle Agua Vida school! The kids were younger K-6th, but very eager to play all of the sports we had available! We had a few kids participate in the Home Run Derby! One muchacho hit 5 home runs and one muchacha hit 3 home runs! Kick ball, Soccer, and Basketball were still a big hit and lunch provided a time for rest and beautiful singing! The voices of the children were beautiful, and definitely heaven sent! We ended are day at the park with dancing, and waved Adios to our friends!
Tonight we have our last day of Children’s Church with Pastor Wilbur’s congregation and will say Goodbye to his kids for the last time! Tomorrow…Back to Halley’s Place for fun with the Pastor Belcer’s Secondary students! Until then, Hasta Manana!
July 14, 2013–After another amazing breakfast from the lovely ladies at La Quinta Primavera, we set off for another Sports adventure! Today we loaded the bus with food and snacks…aaaaand about 90 people! Stacked three and in some cases four to a seat, we headed out to our mission for the day! Hola Lake Nicaragua! Pastor Wilbur and his crew were in full swing! Our team provided any toy imaginable for the kids (and adults) to swim and play with! From beach balls to water guns to water balloons and footballs, we had a BLAST! The kids and adults ate well and some even when out to the lake again after we ate! You could definitely tell that the spirit was alive and well within our wonderful group. The bus ride allowed all of us, young and old to get to know each other better! English speakers were speaking Spanish, and Spanish speakers were speaking English! It was great! We all got a little closer, so close in fact, we found ourselves sleeping on each other! It was a long and tiring ride but blessed nonetheless! Our day ended with a marvelous experience. Two of Pastor Wilbur’s church family were so kind enough to share their testimony with us. Both ladies were beautiful and very well spoken, and we enjoyed hearing their wonderful and dynamic stories. This entire experience is truly humbling and the “gringos”, (as they so affectionately call us), are learning something new everyday. As were learned in our morning devotional today from James 1, our cultures may be different but our struggles, at times, can be very much the same. It is important to take those struggles and somehow turn them into a way to glorify God. Any chance we get, whether going to church or swimming in the lake we can take time are to be thankful and glorify the Lord! Until next time…Buenos noches nuestros hermanos!
July 13, 2013- We began the day as a family, growing deeper in the word. Our team was led through a devotional centered around Matthew 14, and how Peter was led to walk on water just as Jesus did. We ended up focusing a one point in particular, “How did Peter get half way across the water and lose faith?’ Jesus brought him that far yet he continued to have doubt. This was a topic that many of us could relate to and have all had problems with before. Faith is something that we have to work at everyday, and to be able to walk out in life everyday, relying completely on faith is something that only God can make happen. After morning devotion, we enjoyed an amazing breakfast and loaded the busses with tons of sports equipment and sandwiches, ready to tackle the day! As we approached Halley’s place, we immediately got to work, setting up areas for our distinguished guests to participate in any sport imaginable! We were expecting about 40 kids and adults and boy did they show up! We greeted them with warms smiles, hi-fives and hugs and got down to the business of “jugando”! It was a busy and exhausting day filled with meeting new people both young and old, breaking down barriers and gaining the trust of our new found brothers and sisters! From beisbol to futbol, and kickball as well as baloncesto (basketball), we had a fun-filled day! We started the day not knowing what to expect, but by stepping out on faith we gained a new found knowledge and respect for our new friends. Tomorrow we tackle SWIMMING!