Tuesday, March 20th
We started off the morning with a breakfast of Mexican sweet breads that we bought from a truck the night before, peach yogurt, and fresh pineapple - so juicy! Scott shared a devo and some good scripture, then we were picked up for our workday.
I helped in the printing press again for a bit, but wanted to be outside in the sunshine so moved to weeding in the Garden of Hope. We each had a chunk (of the cement path) to weed and picked at it with chisels. We had worship music playing, the sun was shining, we were chatting, all was good! All of a sudden we felt the earth move and shake, later learning that there had been a 7.4 scale earthquake nearby in Oxaca and we were feeling the aftershock. It was such a weird feeling - almost like being stuck in a bowl of Jello!
After work we had lunch, where my high happened. I was at the little girls table sitting next to 3 year old Ximena who was across from 4 year old Evalin. Because we had played capture the flag yesterday everyone had their own bandanna and before their lunch trays were set in front of them, Ximena neatly unfolded her yellow bandanna and spread it out in front of her and her friend. They then reached hands across their "tablecloth", bowed their tiny heads, and prayed thanks to Jesus for their food. My eyes welled up with tears and I was struck by this simple act of two little girls using a free piece of cloth to make their lunchtime just a little more beautiful. I instantly thought of how my mom used to make tea parties, birthdays, and even random dinners so special for me and my friends, breaking out the candlesticks and wine goblets, and how they don't have a mom to do that for them. I also had a vision of my barely used $50 Crate & Barrel tablecloth and felt spoiled, in not a good way. These little girls have so few material possessions to their name, yet were so willing to thank God and find joy in what they DID have. Huge lesson learned, and I was so grateful to have witnessed that quiet moment.
Evelin & Ximena - the two sweet girls
After lunch, we served the kids a treat of ice cream, which they all loved!
The wind picked up quite a bit over lunch so our planned afternoon activity of kite making and flying was interesting! We brought materials for each kid to make a paper kite and helped them cut and tape the basic kite, and let them decorate it. Many of the kids wrote "I Love Jesus" on their kites and were thrilled with the markers and stickers.
It was way too windy to fly them but the kids wanted to try anyway, so many a kite got ripped or tangled. The kids didn't care at all - they had a blast!
We were then invited to join the Tuesday afternoon staff meeting, which they held in the cleared out dining tent. We had a time of stripped down worship (guitar and bongos) and it was inspiring how quickly and genuinely the staff was able to enter His presence. We were asked to stand as a team and Susy McNally said they'd like to pray for us. We stood in a line in the front and smiled at all the staff, thinking we'd hear a few nice words of prayer. Rene got on the mic and mentioned the earlier earthquake, saying he believed God wanted to shake things up. He asked the guitar and bongos to shake it up as well and they began to play. I bowed my head and closed my eyes and all of a sudden felt a hand on my shoulder, one on my back, and one on my belly. The tent was filled with earnest and heartfelt prayers, both in English and Spanish. It was one of the most beautiful sounds I'd ever heard. I had Sandra in front of me praying rapidly and emotionally in Spanish with her warm hand on Petrie, while her husband David was next to us with his hands on Tyge. I could hear Bridget and Molly Nielsen behind me and feel their hands supporting me as well. Tyge reached over and held me and I reached to my left and held Emily. This went on for 10+ minutes as I wept uncontrollably - I'd never been so filled with the Holy Spirit or felt His presence more than that. When it ended, we were all is awe. Tyge and I sought Sandra and David out to thank them after and I asked Sandra what she prayed for. She said she had prayed for our marriage, for our baby, and that we would never give up in raising a family who would serve God - she said her and David saw us and felt called by God to pray for us. I told her I hadn't really felt a huge connection with Petrie until that moment, still afraid of losing him/her I guess. When she prayed, something switched in my heart and I felt a peace about everything. I am so grateful for her prayers - without even knowing me or my story, she was able to bless and minister to me. Her faith and obedience in listening to God's promptings is incredible.
We were all emotionally drained so trudged back to dinner and shared our prayer experiences with one another. It was neat to hear how we were all blessed in different and powerful ways. Before bed, Ivana shared her testimony with us all, and we went to sleep grateful for what was my best day at EV yet.
**Some photos taken by me, some taken by other team members!