We have been through alot this week...Sessions have become much more intense, with the topics all ranging from Pride, to Emotional Boundaries, to Hospitality to God's Gift of Prophesy. Our personal favorite at the moment is the series on putting our Identity in Christ. At times it is difficult to sit and listen to someone speak on how we change our identity at times, to things that are other than Christ, but it is also vitally important to our ministry that we learn these things and become familiar with them before outreach.
We are all feeling emotionally and physically exhausted, as our schedules are rather busy every day. Last weekend was an exception - it was Family Weekend!! Last weekend we had the opportunity to share our living situation, as well as our ministries and our friends with our families. Each member of our team was able to share with at least 1 member of their family for at least a few hours. Bethany's brother visited from West Point, which was a surprise as it is an 8 hour round trip drive. Audrey was blessed by her Mom, Dad, and brother as well as 3 members of her Care Team. Sarah was pleasantly surprised when her Mom and Dad came on Sunday afternoon to share with her, and Melanie was graced with her mom, dad and 1 of the 2 sisters as well as 1 member of her Care Team. To all who blessed us with your presence during our Family Weekend, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts. We long to share this journey with you and are so thankful that you are supporting us in such real and tangible ways. To anyone else who is reading this - you are just as vital to our team as our direct families and we are so grateful to have you in our lives. Family Weekend was a success, even though at the end of it, we all wished it was at least 3 days longer...
Now, onto a tangible and very hands-on project that we as a team have begun to embark on. Community Outreach!! Some of you may be aware, and others may not, so we have decided to let you in on what we are doing for this aspect of our training. The story begins when during a Life Group session, we took a walk to visit The Silence of Mary Home, which holds significant meaning for Beth. She told us the story of her friend Danielle Forney, who had worked there during their college years and shared a bit of her heart with the group. She also shared that Danielle had passed away a few months following their graduation from Messiah, and the garden we were sitting in was designed in her memory. While we were there, the group really felt that God was leading us to begin our outreach in this garden. It is an opportunity to make a big difference, and also to be a part of a legacy. Beth was ecstatic about this because it gave the group an opportunity to join in a story of her life!! So, that same day, we spoke with the director of the home, and she accepted us with open arms. Since then, every Tuesday and Thursday we have begun working on various projects there - weeding the garden and straightening things up. It is a beautiful place, but tends to get over-run because there is not a lot of people to keep it up. Just yesterday, Sue, the director, came out to see our progress and was overjoyed with what we had been doing. She was so grateful. The coolest thing about this ministry opportunity, is that not only is God working through us, but He is still working through Danielle... The only downfall currently: the horrific mosquitos. We now affectionately call them "Super Bugs" because even with the "Skin-So-Soft" on...we each have at LEAST 3o bites a piece... Moms: Bug Spray and After Bite are welcome in any care packages...:-D
The team is greatly looking forward to this weekend - this will be one of the first weekends of which we do not have anything necessarily planned. We have a lot of free time to just sit and enjoy each others company and do....NOTHING!
Please continue to join with us in prayer for the health of the group, as well as for our exhausted bodies...we need renewed energy!
And as always, pray for Spain...
Blessings to all,
The 4 Spanish Roses