June 16, 2013- Kate

Relationships… They are what we were made for.  We are made to be in relationship with God.  We are also made to be in relationship with other people and through those relationships, share God’s love.  This trip has reminded me of that, once again!

It’s amazing to see the relationships that all the people on the trip form with the kids of the community.  Two years ago, I got to know two little girls – Daniela in Cuesta Arena and Dona in Los Cocos.  Daniela and I sat under the pavilion one afternoon and I could feel God in that moment – just sitting and doing nothing… It was amazing and almost indescribable (as you can tell from my pretty bad description of it).  Dona and I just formed a little bond at VBS in Los Cocos and I got to see her at church that year as well and it just made me so happy to be able to worship with her.

This year – I got to see both little girls!  I definitely didn’t think I’d be able to recognize them, but as soon as I saw them, I knew it was them.  We had that relationship.  I got to see how much Daniela has grown and that she is reading now and she read to multiple people from our group.  Dona showed up with her nephew and it was so fun to see this girl who seemed like such a little girl who was now still a little girl, but taking care of an even littler baby.

It’s been fantastic to see the relationships the people of Los Cocos have formed with the children of the community.  Last time Sarah led VBS, but this time, the people from the community had taken ownership.  They led the three groups of over 300 kids.  Wendy who helped last time, has shown so much growth!  And it was great to get to work with her again.

It’s been so great to see our group form relationships with Sarah, Jordan, and Bernando – our driver.  I love how relationships can be formed off of laughter!  That always makes me so happy.  I mean, who doesn’t love laughter?  We have laughed about so many things – like farts.  Yeah.  Morgan is with us after all.  So there was a lot of talk involving farts.  And the phrase to be remembered for all times coined by our lovely Shelby, “Look out Bernando, It’s coming for you!”  But it’s been great to see how many nicknames everyone can come up with for Bernardo.

And it’s been super to see Pastora Sairy again!  I was able to meet her 2 years ago when we came down.  Back then and now she reminds me so much of our Pastor back home – she puts value in youth and children, has a sense of humor, is kind, and knows that it’s not just about what happens inside the walls of the church.

She and her sons came to visit Florida last year and with Sarah, they came to our summer program.  It was such a fun thing that they came to visit!

We got to go on her radio show this week, which was an honor, and she mentioned about the song Beautiful Things, which we sang last summer.   Then on the way to Los Cocos yesterday, they played a cd in the van and I got goosebumps with that song came on (and Sarah said it was for us) and I sang my heart out in the backseat of the van with Felix (Pastora’s son) singing his heart out.

And as I got to ride in the backseat of the van full of people who I love on the way between two places where I gave some love, but also received so much love in return…  I couldn’t help but thank God for making Beautiful Things out of US!

You make beautiful things, You make beautiful things out of the dust.

You make beautiful things, You make beautiful things out of US!

Hey God!  Thank you for making beautiful things out of US!  Thank you for those relationships in our life – for those at home and those far away.  Help us to show your love through those relationships.  Please help us to stay close to you, wherever we are.  Thank you so much for this week and for everything!  AMEN!

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