Thursday, January 27, 2011

...oh how a pencil bag can bring a smile...

So a couple months ago a good friend of mine from church asked me if we had any needs here because the women's group at Curves in Clinton wanted to do some type of special giving for Christmas. I told her about the Casa Hogar (Children's home) that I volunteer at and how they will be starting school in February (public schools start their new year then). She decided to send me back with a full pencil bag for each of them, which included new pencils, crayons, glue, sharpeners, erasers, little games, stickers, and we added a new toothbrush! The group from GCA that came a couple weeks ago also gave several things to add in their bags! I was able to go up yesterday and deliver them to the kids. I go up every wednesday and help them with any homework they have and projects, things like that. And everytime I ask, well can you get a pencil, or some glue, they have to run around the house asking other kids if they can borrow some or where they can get some. They don't have much for themselves that they can keep because there are 40 other kids using the stuff! So for them to get their own things was SO exciting. We had to make sure and tell the kids they couldn't use the stuff until next week, when school starts, because they were so excited, they would have used up all their pencils/crayons the next day, haha! We got them all together and told them that a very special group of ladies from the U.S cared about them so much and wanted to send them just something little to begin their year and that we hope they have an amazing year in school and that we love them. The kids immediately ran inside and started pulling everything out of their bags, counting their new pencils, organizing the crayons, and comparing their new folders and showing off their high school musical vs. the hannah montana, haha. It was such a blessing to be a part of that and seeing the smiles on their faces and the excitement. So a HUGE shout-out to the women at curves, thank you so much for giving these things - I wish you could have actually seen their excitement yourselves, but I hope these pictures give you a little idea....

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

...its about HIS glory, its not about YOU, you are called to LOVE...

I was pretty excited when I got back from Christmas because I knew 3 days later, my cousin and aunt were bringing a youth mission team from Grace Christian Academy! A good Honduran friend of mine, Becky Vega, made all the plans and schedule for them and I knew it was going to be a great week. Some of their mission projects included: 

  • Digging out a hole for a septic tank because a group that came a week later started constructing bathrooms for a very very poor community that has never had a bathroom, they just go in the woods! 
  • Ministering/Serving at an elderly home. This is also a very poor place, which takes in elderly people whose families have basically abandoned them. They were able to do some MUCH needed cleaning around the facilities and handed out stuffed animals to the elderly which they loved! This included scooping up trash which had just built up, not a fun job at all! 
  • Visited Destino del Reino and worked with several different grades working on english pronunciation, shared their testimonies, got WHIPPED at bible verse look-up game against 4th graders, and were able to hear the story of the school and how God is at work there raising up these poor children to know/love/and share God's love with their families. 
  • Visted MY school and came to my Conversation classes, helped with 1st grade classes, my PE classes and were able to see/hear our school's mission! 
  • They were able to take 4 bags of rice, beans, sugar, and salt to 4 different families which will feed them for about 3 weeks!!! That was about $25 dollars worth, amazing. But they got to actually deliver it to the people and give it them, what a blessing to be able to see exactly where your money went and how/who it is helping. I am praying about trying to help these families more during my time here. 
  • They also got to visit: Comayagua, use to be the capital city of Honduras. Pulaphanzach, amazing waterfall where they got to do ziplining and walked behind the waterfall. High Ropes course and team building overlooking Siguatepeque! 
It was a great week and I think we saw a lot of growth in the 6 kids that attended the trip. A couple of them had never been out of the country or on a mission trip, so it was very very eye opening for them. I just hope they allow this experience to change them, and change their foundation on how they see the world and their world. It really does take a conscious change in your attitude and your thoughts - like this verse....

“And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” (Romans 12:2)

I don't think the Lord is saying, I will transform your mind FOR you and make it easier for you to not to fall into the traps of this world, I think he is saying, CHOOSE to be transformed and do it yourself and make an effort to follow me and choose what is good. You constantly have to remind yourself to be thankful for what you have, because there are so many people in this world that would kill for a bag of rice, beans, and salt. Just because it isn't in our direct sight, doesn't mean it shouldn't be in our minds, transforming us and the way we see our world. I was so blessed and thankful to be a part of the group that came down and just share his LOVE with some people of Siguatepeque. I want to give a big shout out and thank you to the awesome amazing students and leaders that came all the way here, gave their time, money, efforts to help just a few people and share the love of Christ with them. This def. was not one of those - go to a children's home and kiss babies and make crafts, which those trips are amazing, don't get me wrong. But these kids had to WORK, I mean they did the things that nobody else wanted to do - scoop trash and chicken poop, shoveled sand, moved over 100 bricks, used pick axes to dig through rock so a family can have a bathroom, clean an elderly home, and more! So Debbie Barnes, Lauren Sharon, Kristen, Haley, Madison, Joey, John, and Sweeeeze - THANK YOU!!! Remember Honduras and keep these people in your prayers!! 

Monday, January 10, 2011

...home for the holidays...

Well I have finally caught up enough with my work to blog a little bit about my visit back home!! My family/friends had so much planned for me, it was something different every day - which I LOVED. Here are some things that went down in order of appearance:

  • Randi/Jo meet me @ Airport - Taco Bell within 15 minutes
  • Cleft Christmas Party - found lots of ugly christmas sweaters in Tammy's closet which dressed the whole family. 
  • Wasabis - enough said. I hate leftovers for 3 days.
  • Lunch with friends I haven't seen in too long - Five Guys
  • Christmas Eve with my Dad's side - the Buttermilk Adventure afterwards
  • Christmas Day with my Mom's side - Progressive breakfast morning - made baleadas at our house!
  • Wal-Mart christmas shopping with my brother!
  • Snowboarding in NC - Taco Bell included!
  • UT Football Bowl game in the box!! 
  • New Years @ my house with Just Dance party
  • Passion Conference in ATL! - Taco Bell included
  • Flew back to Honduras
  • Group arrived this saturday from Grace Christian with my aunt/cousin!
  • Present. 
Now, here are some awesome photos from my break! Enjoy! (Oh yeah, side not - I got to do EVERYTHING in my post below that I was looking forward to!!!)