The Peru team is doing great! Our work project is going well. We ran out of material and hope the rest will be delivered tomorrow. We had the opportunity to share in our first presentation at church Sunday and prayerfully we will share it in a public school this week.
The weather has been humid and clear and very warm. We have had only one rain storm last week to where we had to do our team evening devotion time in our 10 X 12 foot kitchen.
I know that not any of our team members have lead anyone to the Lord but this weekend at church, two young children came to church for the first time Sunday morning and then that evening when their father came, he gave his heart to the Lord.
We have had many outstanding experiences this week. The building site is going well. The kids are amazing and have accomplished things like real professionals.
We were able to finally join the church Saturday night as they did a wonderful presentation for us. They are the warmest people we have ever met. We gave our first short presentation to the church which is our first real audience.
Sunday was a beautiful day. We attended church in the morning and rested and join them for a Sunday evening service where James was completely surprised the way they chose to celebrate his 18th birthday today. They made a two-story beautiful chocolate cake and during the service called him up to have everyone sing happy birthday and then literally everyone in the congregation lined up to give them a hug. I don’t have a photo because I was videotaping and it was over 10 minutes long as they sing happy birthday to you in Spanish than English over and over. I could see that he was truly touched by their warmth and kindness. I don’t think that’s a birthday he’ll ever forget!
Today was another incredible day. As the kids all worked hard on the project and we knew we are going to run out of supplies and praying for a delivery tomorrow. We made the decision to go to the public pool with the church people. It was a blast.
Sam Nesbitt: This summer has been awesome in many aspects so far, but the most profound aspect is the spiritual growth I am experiencing and what God has been teaching me here in Peru. My team has been going through certain issues that test each other’s patience and self pride, which really stands out to me because I have been working on my own patience and kindness with others. Also, I try to throw away my pride in order to be humble and accepting of correction. This is something that I pray often for because humility and patience should be very important characteristics of all Christians. Ephesians 4:31, 32 and 2 Timothy 2:23 are two verses that I found during devotions that pertain to not being quarrelsome and rather be kind and patient every day is a test of patience and humility. God has really revealed to me that doing good to and for others before myself is the true source of success and happiness. I pray that God will always remind me to put others before myself. Going through Boot Camp and living here in Peru has also really shown me how blessed I am in my normal and easy life in America. It took two weeks in the hot and humid wilderness of Florida, while living in only tents and bathing myself with buckets of stinky lake water, to make me truly realize how thankful I need to be towards God for my loving parents, my air-conditioned home, all of that easily acquired and clean food and water I drink, all of my caring friends, and the health that I have been blessed with. I pray and thank God for all of these things every day now, and I thank him most for bringing me here, giving me the strength to endure, and helping me realize how blessed I am. Praise God!
Aubrey Johnson: On Monday we went to the local pool with the nationals to celebrate James 18th birthday! We got to take motorcar taxis to the pool and they are so cool! The pool was on the other side of town so we got to see the city of Pucallpa on our way over. It was so fun to see everything. We got to the pool and there was a water slide! The time we spent there was so fun! We all of course went down the waterslide multiple times and played fun pool games altogether, like tips and volleyball. By the end of our time at the pool, everyone was exhausted (for some reason swimming makes you so tired). It was so fun and an adventure to go swimming with the nationals! I am so thankful that God has brought each and every one of my team members together for the trip this year! I am so thankful that He has blessed as with the best nationals ever! They are so hospitable, kind, loving and are basically the sweetest people ever! He knew exactly what He was doing when He put this whole thing together! (of course because He’s God) I’m so excited to see how He works the rest of the summer here in Peru!
Emily McConnell: We arrived in Pucallpa in the early hours of Monday. Monday was the designated move in and rest day. When we saw the project. It was a mirror one-story brick house, built by last year’s TMI team. Mr. Rob went to order our lumber on Tuesday, but it wouldn’t arrive until Thursday. That kind of crunched our week down to three days to try to get the four joints down for the second story we were to build. Everyone worked superhard and we got almost half of the four joints down. By Saturday the base to our floor was almost complete. Sunday was a great day to relax and evangelize with the nationals and each other. The Peruvian church service was amazing (even though I didn’t understand much of it). The people here are so kind and giving. Monday was James birthday, so we went out to dinner Sunday night and when we got back there was another church service and after that they threw him a party. Sunday night our main water pipe broke and on Monday we had a standstill of lumber. Little things like this happened days prior, but God has continually reminded us that He is in control. The pipe got fixed Monday and we are getting another load of lumber today. God has this team in His hands. It is still in His time. He has continually provided and kept our team in a spirit of unity. Three more work weeks!