We can’t believe we have already made it through the first week! All the team members are still going strong, waking up early and running hard through the Obstacle Course. We had a pretty strong rain storm come in a few days ago and swamp some of the tent sites, as well as the Obstacle Course, but the team is staying positive and encouraged. It has been a real joy to watch many of the members grow as they step outside their comfort zones and working through issues in their hearts with God. It is especially excited to watch them each night during the rallies, as they worship in what feels like 110 degrees in the Big Top, after very longs days of working outside in the heat, and practicing their music, dramas and learning puppets. There is a great hunger in many of them as they continue to come forward during ministry time and get counseling and go deeper with Jesus.
They are working very hard and in very hot and humid conditions (Don’t worry parents! We are on them every second about water and hydrating!) We have had the privilege already twice to help the kitchen with prep in serving all the other teens on base, and very proud of our team as we started out the week for cleanliness in the bottom and Friday climbed up to the very top with only minus one point off from Mr. Clean, earning the team ice cream and popsicles yesterday afternoon. It was so fun to watch when they were announced Friday night and their unified celebration was boisterous to say the least! The team is growing stronger in unity and being taught how to work together in their differences, and through many challenges. Yesterday morning especially was a victory during the Obstacle Course as they were flawless in their count off to start and did the books of the Bible in order perfectly and together well. There are a lot of vocal leaders on this team, as well as opinionated members, but as they are put in situation that require quick thinking and decision making, they are growing in their attitudes, leadership and love for one another.
Last night the kids had an opportunity to write their struggles down and nail it onto the cross after a powerful message and then share with their team. Many are opening up and bringing things into the light to allow Jesus to work on them, and get freedom. It’s been powerful and exciting to be a part of.
Today we had an early morning service called the Galilean Service out at one of the lakes where we worshipped and a message was given on a floating dock. It was a beautiful morning and grateful to have it this year early to beat the heat. There was no Obstacle Course today, giving them a break, and tonight they will be getting pizza and milkshakes. They are all finding appreciation in the little things, as they are having to take bucket baths, eat all their food, have water in their tents, to be on time, walk in straight lines, go to the bathrooms as a team, learn to be quiet and take orders and have mosquito bites all over. In all that to say, they are truly champs and are getting ready to go overseas!
Here are few words from some of the Fiji Team Members and their experience so far:
“Hey Mom and Dad! I am doing great so far and am learning so much. Can’t wait to see you all. Love you so much!” – Emma T.
“It was the best of times. It was the worst of times. Miss and love you all” – Alejandra S.
“I am having an amazing time here. It is so worth it, even with all the sweat and heat. I miss you guys so much. It really is fun to be making new friends and great memories.” – Isabella V.
“Dear friends and family. Boot Camp is hard but I am learning a lot and making good friends. I am looking forward to going to Fiji. I love and miss you all!” – Lydia J.