so. I was beginning to doubt the title of my blog until, like, yesterday.
Since my last post, Caitlyn got un poquito peor (a little worse) and, after discussing with her mom and our field supervisor, decided to board a flight back to the US on Friday. CAITLYN, WE MISS YOU LIKE CRAZY!! SINGING JUSTIN BEIBER AND TALKING ABOUT STEVEN COLBER IS NOT THE SAME WITHOUT YOU. But before she left, Wednesday we met a girl from CHICAGO here on a life-break, backpacking through Central and South America and stuck in Yungay for the day - so cool to be able to encourage her in English! Also gave our bread to a man who then proceeded to ask for my Coke. Smart man. Thursday we taught our second class (and Caitlyn got to come!) and we taught numbers, the alphabet, and creation. Class went so incredibly well, and we had even more kids than Tuesday!``Passing the voice'`as they say here works pretty well! After class, we loaded an overloaded bus (as all of them are) with several other Peruvian missionaries from a church in Lima to go to a Christian Ministry-Missionary Training Conference thing in Tarica (about an hour ride from Yungay). But first, because there´s no such thing as a quick trip anywhere here, we stopped by the orfanato in Ongo to meet the boys that all of these missionaries have been praying for. Incredible place where these boys learn about the Lord and really find family... Finally got to Tarica, had spaghetti for dinner (yum!), and went to bed on probably some of the most awkward bunkbeds ever - impossible to get onto the top bunk without waking EVERYONE ELSE up - and were serenaded by a choir of sweet missionary women`s snoring all night. How fabulous is that. Friday morning, woke up at 5 to take Caitlyn to the mini airport in Anta (and met two guys from SWEDEN! Caleb, you would totally fit right in. No beard-mustache craziness. Just intense cheekbones and skinny jeans.) Watched the sunrise over Huascaran...probably the most beautiful thing EVER. The stinkin mountain changes colors. It´s really too incredible for words. Or pictures for that matter, considering I didn`t take any. :S Anyway, then finally made it back to the conference center in time for breakfast and the first session. We sang There Is Power in the Blood and I cried. Sigh. Then we listened to some speakers encouraging these missionaries (in Spanish - I could have caught more had I had more than 5 hours of sleep) and met Veronica and Simon from Mexico and Australia respectively - and THEY SPOKE ENGLISH! PRAISE THE LORD! Accent and all, it was such a needed break! Saw someone carrying a TESCO bag and immediately missed London and one pound pasta! After lunch, I took possibly the best three-hour nap I´ve ever had, and then we left for Mancos for our Friday night Bible study and then came back to Yungay. The most adventurous part of this story was the BUS RIDE BACK. First of all, buses here will cram as many people in as possible, which means lots of people are standing as the bus tries to dodge as many potholes as possible (which ends up being not as many as you would hope). Second of all, Krista and I got to sit in the FRONT. Which means that we got to see EVERYTHING - passing another car going around a curve in the mountain, almost hitting people and animals all along the way, etc. etc. And THEN, it starts raining. WHICH NEVER HAPPENS HERE. So amidst wondering if there´s another car comin´ round the mountain, we´re also stressing about hydroplaning off the side of the mountain and keeping the windshield free from fogginess so that the bus driver can see. AARRRGGGHHH. Adventure, right? Right.
TODAY. I have no idea where even to begin. We had planned back at the beginning of the summer to tour the biggest mountain in Peru which is conveniently located right outside of Yungay - Huascaran - along with the groups in Huaraz and Recuay. However, last night, one of the girls in Huaraz fainted twice, and the team took her to the hosital there where she was told that she has a stomach infection and had to stay overnight. So needless to say, Huaraz didn´t join us for Huascaran today. BUT, this morning, we got up early, packed peanut butter sandwiches and chips and fruit and oreos for lunch, and went to teach our class before touring the mountain with Recuay. (more on class to come) Huascaran was beautiful. Rainy, misty, very English Lake District -esque. Except ten times more intense. Got some great pictures and had some good times feeling like we were going to ride off the mountain with Recuay team. Had a translator-guide from Belgium who was a nanny in London for a while (neat to talk with her!) and spent five hours riding up the mountain to Lake Llanganuco (most beautiful teal green glacier lake EVER) and hiked back down. (Yes, we´re pansies for hiking DOWN, but trust me. That was tough enough.)
So back to class this morning... The English class itself went pretty well - we only had five students show up, but we were basically just reviewing from the week anyway, so it was good! Then, after playing BINGO, one of the boys won and his prize was a mini Evangecube. Noemi explains to the kids in Spanish what the cube means, and then asks if anyone would like to accept Christ. and THEY ALL DO. So we sit down in a circle and Noemi leads them in a prayer to receive Christ and be saved.
Oh, how awkward this makes me feel. Garaywa has taught me, NEVER EVER EVER lead kids in a group prayer to accept Christ. Kids WILL NOT TELL YOU NO if you ask them a yes or no question. They want to please you. They want to follow their friends. Aargh. Well, I kept a happy face on and encouraged the kids as much as I could, and we invited them back to church tomorrow to talk more about the decision they had made. Sigh. Stinkin language barrier. And then, the more I thought about it, the more God reminded me that DISCIPLESHIP is really the point. That one-time commitments just don´t cut it. That whether or not these kids´ decisions today were real or not, the point is not conversions. It´s discipleship. We are called to go and make disciples. So that´s what we´re going to do. It is most definitely not my place to judge whether or not these decisions were real. My Father knows these kids´ hearts. It is my job, however, to teach them to observe everything He has commanded us. To show them what it means to be a Christ-follower. To be His disciple.
So, prayer requests for this week. Shoyle. Lourdes. Jorge. Jesús. (and for the life of me, I cannot remember Jesús`s big brother`s name, but remember him too!) Pray that these kids will remain faithful to coming to classes to learn more about following Christ. Pray that they will truly FOLLOW Him and not simply find ``fire insurance'' in repeating a prayer. Pray that they would seek Him with all of their hearts. And continue to pray that God would draw more kids to the classes to hear the Gospel - that although we are hopeless sinners, the God of the universe desires relationship with us for His own glory and sent His Son to reconcile us to Him. Pray for encouragement for our teams all over Peru this summer - that sickness would NOT prevent ministry. And that God would get the glory over all.
Our God is so big, so strong and so mighty, there´s nothing our God cannot do.