Tuesday. 20 minutes after finishing a four hour spanish class and I am beat.
This weekend was really fun. I didnt have alot of work to do because my classes had not officially started, and I was able to learn a little more about the culture of Cuenca and I was able to spend alot of time with my family. I spent all day Saturday with my host sister Sandy, and I met a bunch of her friends. I listened in on their worship band practice and I was so impressed. They have about 12 or 13 people in their worship band and it sounded so great! After worship practice everyone from all of the worship teams, probably about 45 people total, goes to someone's house for fellowship and prayer. It was so loud and crazy and so much fun!
Sunday was my first experience with the Church and I loved it. I met a ton of people at the Church, and I was even able to recognize some people that I had met earlier. I am beginning to feel a little at home which is so refreshing, but I still have a long way to go before I feel completely comfortable here. The rest of Sunday was spent studying, spending time with my family, and getting the opportunity to skype with some friends and family. Sunday was really refreshing and it was encouraging to talk to people from home. But, on Sunday night the cousin of my siblings here came over and we watched a movie and sat around and talked until after midnight. Needless to say, Monday morning at 6:30 was not a happy time.
Yesterday, Monday, was one of the longest days that I have had in a long time. I woke up early to get to class by 7:45. I had Spanish class from 7:45 until noon. I really needed that time of really intense studying of Spanish so that I can continue to improve with my Spanish, but my brain wants to shut off afterwards! So, I came home and had lunch with my family, took a 20 minute nap and then went on a bike ride with my brother. This was really fun becuase he speaks some English and helps me learn more Spanish, so as we were riding he was taking me through the city and showing me some of his favorite places. Then we got home just in time for me to catch a ride back to the Church for what I thought was going to be a 1 and a half or 2 hour meeting. From 4:00 until almost 8:00 I was in a meeting with Grant, Gustavo Leon (the Taylor Leasion for the Church), and about 12 ministry leaders from the church filtering in and out. 4 hours of meetings and I was so tired and overwhelmed. We met with almost every ministry leader at the Church in order to get a grasp on what each one does at the Church, and what their goals are. It was really interesting to talk to each person and see the passion that they have for their specific ministry. Anyway, after that I met up with my brother and sister who were getting the Church ready for today, which is a special service for Valentines Day. I was helping, and between the work that needed to be done, a visit to a friend who was sick, and a quick run to the Big Kahuna Burger stand, we didnt get home until 11 p.m. And I hadnt even started my homework. Last night was another long night, and today I am definitly feeling it.
Today during my Spanish class, I could already tell that I was improving, and my teachers here are so encouraging. They love to teach, and they are very helpful. I know that I am learning alot, because my brain hurts and because when I am in a conversation with someone, I dont have to say, "Como se dice...?" as much. This afternoon Grant and I are meeting to pray for the ministries that we met with earlier, and also to discuss what our plan of action is going to be for working with the ministries. Tomorrow we are scheduled to meet with the ministry S.O.S. (which is an addictions ministry) and the rest of the week we have more meetings with other ministries. As Grant and I meet, and as we anticipate investing time in other ministies, please pray...
1. That we will keep God as our focus, and seek to serve the Church in any way possible.
2. That the people that we meet with will be open to what we are saying, and will see Christ working in and through us.
3. That I will be refreshed and renewed each day with rest, and also in the Spirit.
and 4. That as I encounter new challenges and onstacles, that I will keep the goal of serving Christ, getting to know Him better, and learning new things in mind at all times.