So it's been a while since I've been able to post, the internet hasn't been working or has been really slow. This will probably be the last one I post before coming back to the states, so here you go...
Christmas here was so great. We had a big lunch with all the kids and they were all dressed up. After lunch we all went to the church and all of us volunteers helped to pass out the presents to the kids. Some of them had such big stacks of gifts, taller than they were. The kids here are really blessed and they get their gifts mostly from their sponsors. So the next day, which is our Christmas in the states, we had a special service in the morning where a group of the kids performed their Christmas play. In the evening we had a cookout with all of the volunteers to celebrate Christmas.
Last Sunday I went into town with some of the guys and one of the guys from the NC team started talking to these two boys in the street outside of the supermarket. One of them was in a wheelchair because one of his legs was shorter than the other and he couldn't walk. He went off to the side of the road and started praying with him that God would heal his leg. The rest of us went and stood with them and prayed for him too after we were done at the store. Its little moments like that that I really enjoy.
This past week has been so much fun. We got together on Sunday and planned games to do with each of the houses for the week. They're basically a lot of field day games.. races, drip drip drop, & balloon games. There were also a couple of inflatable pools we were able to get out for the kids to just go play in at the end and they absolutely love that.
Tuesday night a couple of the middle girls asked me to come spend the night with them at their house with Kristin. After dinner I went over and we watched Camp Rock and just went to bed. Even though I didn't really talk with them a lot before we went to bed I had a great time spending more time with the girls in their house. It is humbling to constantly be reminded that they're all orphans and don't have their families to take care of them. They're so blessed to have Emmanuel though. They have all they need and are daily given the Word of God.
For New Years in the evening all the staff and volunteers met at the team house to have dinner. We had some fireworks and sparklers afterward which most of the staff's kids played with. After dinner we had most of the volunteers over to our house to stay up and bring in the new year, which we did with everyone up on the couches and chairs and jumping off at 12 'into' the new year. Yesterday we had a special service in the morning and a praise and worship service in the evening... and played more water games and stuff with one of the boys' houses in the afternoon. The praise and worship service last night was so great. I loved seeing the boys and girls singing to God and praying at the altar. It was freeing for me as well to worship and not be concerned with the people near me. I've not let my guard down for a while and that has affected how I've worshipped God. I keep trying to protect myself from various things going on in my life and control them myself but obviously that doesn't work. I'm still learning every day to let go and let God.
I'm excited and sad about coming home next week. I've loved my time here and definitely want to return as soon as I can.. so if anyone wants to join me let me know! I'm thinking maybe sometime this summer if it works out. I've missed all of you and have so many pictures to share and stories that I'm sure I've forgotten to post on here. I hope you all have a great rest of the week and continue to pray for all of use here and for Neil and I as we travel back this coming Wednesday.
Have a wonderful day in the Lord!