Buenos Dias from chilly Ecuador! Time is quickly passing and in just one more week we’ll be leaving Ecuador and flying to Florida! The team is going to have to adapt to a warm climate-we’ve had many days with temperatures in the 40’s here in Latacunga!
The team is doing great and we’ve been focusing on finishing our time here in Ecuador well. It’s easy to get distracted with thoughts of home, family, and friends as the time to leave draws close. But, happy to say, the team is coming together with this common goal in mind. So pray for us, that we stay focused on the tasks before us! Our projects continue on the second story, finishing up with the concrete on the walls. It’s a tedious job as some kids are assigned to make the concrete, some are ‘slinging’ it on the wall and some are smoothing and finishing it off! We have another group who are up north of the TMI Base on the mountain working on digging the ditch for a water pipe to be laid. We’ve experienced two complete days without water, and two days where we’ve only had water for just the morning since last we sent a report. We’ve learned in the ‘water on’ times to fill every bucket and container we have so that we have cooking and flushing water for when it goes off! We’re praying our work and efforts here will make the water situation much easier for the Base.
We had the opportunity to do our presentation in another church yesterday. We were at “La Estrella de la Manana”, or The Morning Star church yesterday morning. The team was able to do a drama entitled “Colors”, that depicts the creation of the world, the fall of man, the rejection of Jesus, His death, His resurrection, and ultimately His Salvation to those who believe. They also sang two Spanish and two English songs. It was well received and they did a fantastic job!
God bless you all and please know that we love and miss our families!
Noah Wiggin: This summer has been a really great experience for me. I have learned a lot about what is really important in life and about what I need to give up when I get home. Also, I really enjoy the work we do here, and I am learning to become a harder worker. P.S. Hey, Mom and Dad/Family, I sent out a letter to you guys, so you should be getting it soon. I don’t want this summer to end, but at the same time, I’m a little anxious to get home! Love you guys, thanks for the slingshot, Nathaniel!
Joy Beam: My summer in Ecuador…where can I start? God has been showing Himself to me in so many different ways. I am amazed by what He’s doing. I think the highlight, at least so far, was certainly the time the team spent in Mt Cotopaxi National Park. Although the weather was miserable and our tents kept blowing down because of the strong wind and all, it was an amazing time. Our leaders were such an encouragement during this time – as always! I loved how we were always praying, doing a mini Bible study, or just talking about the Lord. I think this time really helped our team to grow closer together. Climbing Mt Cotopaxi was such a challenge, but I learned that God will take me to new heights when I push myself. Plus, He made it so real to me how my life should be like that mountain – always pushing myself forward, onward, upward, so that I can look back in my life and say, “Look how far God has brought me!” I can’t describe how awesome the view was from the refuge on Mt Cotopaxi. It made me feel so small, but so close to God.
Devotions each evening are also a highlight for me. I will get to lead devotions on July 29, 2013. I love to hear how God has been changing my team mates into the people He wants them to be. One evening while camping, a team member, James Bagans, shared his testimony with us. The presence of the Lord was so near us all. We cried and prayed together for well over an hour. God really moved among us and changed hearts that night. This really renewed my excitement for the mission here in Ecuador.
Our work projects at the base have been teaching me patience, team work, and perseverance. It can also be a lot of fun! We have had some really good conversations during work. My favorite projects have been doing concrete and landscaping.
Since the Ecuadorian Boot Camp began I have been able to judge the Obstacle Course with my team mates for the three teams. Christian Neils and I judge the wall of Miedo (fear).
We have wonderful cooks on this team! I honestly haven’t disliked anything served here.
Oh, I almost forgot about the sight-seeing day we spent in Banos. It was so cool to see all the shops and try bargaining. (I wasn’t very good at it!) My friends and I loved the taffy samples, tried Papi Pollo, and had ice cream – more than once! Plus, the bus ride to and from Banos was a wonderful time with the team.
I can hardly believe there’s only a week left here, and although I’m excited for that’s happened so far, I’m already missing everyone and everything about this team.
This is just a small description of what God’s been doing with me and the team in Ecuador. I’m excited for the days left here and so thankful that God brought me on this team.
Nick Davis: The scenery in Ecuador is by far my favorite thing about this trip. I am fully convinced that this is the most beautiful country in the world. Being able to see Mt Cotopaxi, all of Latacunga, and a couple other volcanoes just from where we eat is breathtaking. Being able to see for myself some of God’s most beautiful creations, landscapes that he created in seconds at the dawn of time, and being able to meditate on that is my favorite thing about this trip.
Ethan Gordon: I have had a fun time here in Ecuador. I can now say that I have hiked up the second tallest volcano, rode in the back of a truck to church, judged the Ecuador Obstacle Course, and gone to a city called Banos. I am surprised how soon we have to leave for debrief and I will miss being here.