Mission Jamaica 2 – 7/11/16

Day 4

Today I woke up early and did some exercising. Barry joined me for my workout and then we went for a run. The road we ran on had lots of hills. It was intense. Also a couple of dogs ran after us. Barry saved us and scared them away. Thank God for him. Good thing I didn’t go by myself.

We didn’t have any water this morning. Being resourceful, I showered with one and half water bottles: half a bottle to soap up and one full bottle to rinse. It made me thankful for what I have. Water is precious and isn’t as easy to come by here as it is in the US. It can easily be taken for granted. I told Barry about it so he could shower also.

For breakfast we had cabbage and vegetables, noodles and fish, bread, watermelon, grapefruit, cantaloupe, and fried plantains two ways. The cabbage was savory and sour. The noodles and fish were spicy. Mother Cooper fried green plantains and ripe plantains. The green ones were dense and tasted like a potato. The ripe ones were more tender and sweeter. It was a great way to energize after the run.

Today was the first day of VBS. It started raining and we thought we wouldn’t have that many kids. Only ten showed up at first. We went forward and Sister Melrose led everyone in singing songs. I even led the kids in Father Abraham. That was fun. Christine introduced the kids to our topic, The Fruit of the Spirit. This included our focus verse, Galatians 5:22-23, and our song. The song had hand movements to it and everyone was very engaged. We broke the students up into their groups. I had the 10-12 group. We talked about love, joy, and peace. Each one had a verse, a bible story, and activity. They all soaked it up like sponges and asked lots of questions. I’m happy with the way it turned out. As time progressed more kids showed up. We ended up having 40 all together. That number will most likely grow throughout the week.

During recess Barry did a soccer clinic. Everyone loved it. Barry was in the zone and guided everyone in how to pass and kick the ball.

I met up with a young man named Demario. I met him last year during VBS. He’s a gifted musician and singer and asked to play my guitar. I obliged and taught him some songs. I started with Good Good Father. He picked it up pretty fast. I only played the song fir him once, and he could play it back instantly. In yhe second and third time playing, he got the melody down. Fourth yime through, we were harmonizing together. I was blown away.

After a while I had to take a break for dinner. Mother Cooper threw down as always. We had stewed chicken, rice, vegetables, and pumpkin. The chicken was very savory and delicious. I never at pumpkin before, outside of a pie that is. I liked it. It was like a cross between a carrot and a sweet potato. Before dinner I had special mission. Susie was still feeling ill from yesterday and I decides to cheer her up with a song. I played Jesus Take The Wheel on my guitar and sang for her. It was awesome to see her vibrant smile.

After posting some pictures and videos on Instagram and Facebook, I went to find Demario to have another jam session. I enjoyed playing and singing with him very much. He has a beautiful voice and it blended well with mine. He loves Good Good Father. Soon Demario and his sister, Antonique, had to leave. I went up to the room to rest for a while before the next service.

The evening service was at Colegate. Norda led us in praise and worship. She has such a beautiful voice and a heart for drawing others into the presence of God. Before Pastor Don preached, he wanted Emily and Christine to say a few words. They each got up and talked about their experiences in Jamaica so far. Emily was happy to be able to worship with another culture of people who loved Jesus as much as she did. Christine, who never taught VBS before, was happy with how the children were responding to all the lessons.

Pastor Don talked about keeping our focus on the cross. We need to lay aside every weight that will slow us down and hold us back so we can run this Christian race the right way. Jesus is the author and finisher of our faith and we need to look to him for all the we need. I was greatly encouraged by his words, as were everyone else. All the people who showed up came to the alter for prayer so they could have the strength to continue on this race. It was an amazing sight.

Afterwards Demario and I had another jam session. He can’t get enough of playing the guitar and singing with me.The joy that comes across across his face when he plays and sings as I teach him songs brightened my day.

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