Wow. It has been way too long since I have sat down and blogged. I know that because everytime I talk to my mom she reminds me! ha! Alot has happened in the last week and a half or two weeks. My professor was here from Taylor and what a blessing that was. It was such a fun time of taking about our experiences here and getting a chance to take her to some of our favorite spots here in Cuenca. On the first full day that she was here, she treated us to some Pizza Hut pizza. I dont know what it is about the Pizza Hut here, but it is so good. I dont love Pizza Hut in the States but here it is such a treat! We also did some shopping, alot of talking, and there was definately a time for laughing! I am thankful for that time that we had together because I was able to talk through some of the emotions and questions that I was working through after the death in my family. I am standing in awe at the perfect timing and plans that God has that are beyond my trivial mind. God is Good
I celebrated by 21st birthday this week, that was quite an experience here in Ecuador with my host family and friends. My host brother David turnend 18 the day before I turned 21, so on Saturday we threw one huge party with all of my friends and his. It was a huge shin dig, and so much fun. David and I wore funny hats, we ate more food than you can even imagine, and had one delicious home made cake! I am going to try and get pictures up soon, but just to give you a little idea, my family bought over 100 balloons, 20 packages of streamers, confetti up to wazoo, and lei's for ever guest. They didnt hold back, that is for sure! It was such a fun experience to have had while being here in Ecuador. We finished off the weekend by cleaning the house, listeninng to one of the most powerful thunderstorms I have heard in a long time, and watching the Ecuadorian soccer team play on every tv station!
This week Grant and I have been working on planning a Mock Sunday School for the leaders of the Sunday School here so that they can see an example of what a well planned Sunday School looks like. It is really exciting to have ideas and then be able to put them into action for these leaders. The guy in charge of the Sunday School, Marcelo, is really excited about having some leader traininng. He sees alot of potential for his leaders, but they have never had any training and they are in need of some new ideas. We are praying that through this we will be able to give them all a clearer vision for Sunday School and also give them more motivation to make the Sunday School as good as it can be.
Yesterday was a fun day for everyone here in Ecuador. The Ecuadorian soccer team was playing Paraguay in the afternoon, and it was a huge game! Apparently this was one of the last games for Ecuador to be able to make it to the finals. Lets be honest, Im not really sure what it was all about, but there was alot of hoopla around here. So in the morning Grant and I went to the central to buy our latin skin, as my brother loves to call it. We bought jerseys, fake of course, and after lunch we all went to Grant's house along with about ten other people to watch the game. It was so exciting, and for most of the game Ecuador was winning so everyone was stoked! Then at the last minute, literally the last minute of play, Paraguay got in a goal to tie the score and leaving everyone less excited. I guess soccer games and jerseys and screaming at the tiny television is something everyone who comes to Ecuador needs to experience! I know I wont regret it!
On Saturday morning at 5a.m. (I dont know what they are thinking) we are taking a 9 hour bus ride into the jungle for the first part of our Spring Break. Then on Tuesday we are taking the bus to Quito where we will grab a flight to the Galapagos! WAHOO! We are all so excited and ready for a break. As we are traveling and enjoying our break, please pray for...
1. Safety, please pray that we will all be safe and conscious of all of our decisions in the different locations
2. Our eyes to be opened, I am so excited to see parts of God's creation that I have never experienced before. Pray that we will not take it for granted and that we will recognize how Great God is in the midst of our awe.
3. Good spirits, please pray that as we are all traveling as one large group for nine days that we will all get along well and that we will have good attitudes the whole time.
and 4. please pray that this break will truly be a break for us. Pray that we will not worry or focus on the work that needs to get done here, but that we will enjoy our break and come back mentally rested.