Friday, July 8
I love Honduras! The reason I love Honduras so much is because nobody knows what to expect (literally). This morning we woke up and had breakfast, pretty typical day. We had devo, which was given by Jason Tennant from PA. His devo was on how "being a servant is doing the little things." He gave examples like picking up trash, cleaning the bathroom, etc. His lesson was very encouraging, because no matter what we do big or small in is all in the name of Jesus.
After devo we had to gather all the luggage and separate it into two groups--the South Carolina and TN/FL/PA/MS. We also had to unload the buses we were taking to Lake Yojoa and separate those boxes. Before we could leave, we had to make sure everything that was not going to the Lake was either with the luggage or with the giveaway items in the storage/bedroom. This was only supposed to take like one hour, but it took an hour and a half. Once everything was stored, we loaded the buses and were on our way 45 minutes late.
Before we went to Lake Yojoa, we stopped by the Jimmy Hughes orphanage. I believe this is one of the coolest places I have ever been to. Most of the children at this orphanage have be abused in some way. However, you would never know it if you would have had the honor of meeting these children. They were all so loving; it brought tears to my eyes to think how anyone would ever want to hurt them. On a more positive note, it is amazing to me how one smile or hug can make a difference in a child’s life. By the way, did I mention that one of the buses broke down on the way to the orphanage? Well it did (Welcome to Honduras)!! So when the working bus (Elroy) dropped us off at the orphanage, the driver turned it around and went to rescue the others. (You gotta love Elroy). While they were being rescued, the others played with the kids for about an hour; then they had to eat lunch. At about the time they started eating, good ol’ Elroy pulled up with the rest of the TORCHers. As a group we walked the street to meet Jimmy Hughes. Mr. Hughes gave a great motivational speech for everyone. When he was finished, the back-up bus arrived, and we loaded up and made our way to Lake Yojoa, Praise God!!
When we arrived, three hours later, we were all very anxious to see the Lake and enjoy the scenery. However, God had another plan. Terry had not arrived yet, so we had no way of getting our rooms until he did. While we were waiting, we were able to eat supper (hamburgers, French fries, and jello). As we were eating Terry arrived and tried to get our rooms. Once again a "welcome to Honduras" moment occurred. We were supposed to have 25 rooms, but the hotel double booked so we only had 19, but we made it work. We finally got our rooming assignments and made our way to our rooms. Terry gave us all about 30 minutes to settle in and be back at the main building for devo. Like always, devo singing was Heavenly. Andy Polk spoke to us. He reminded us that our work was not finished, because our trip was not over. Andy wanted us to also remember that we are a family of love. He wanted us to reflect on all that we had done in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord. He encouraged us to pray and pray some more. Altogether, he wanted us to stay focused. When the lesson was finished we had a brief meeting for Saturday´s events and then went to bed! AHHHHHH SLEEP!!
The rest of the retreat time was spent in many different ways--sleeping, horseback riding, sleeping, swimming, sleeping, time at a waterfall, (did I mention sleeping) and reflecting on all the impacting experiences of the previous days. Everyone is safe and sound back in the States from the first group. Please take time to enjoy their stories and pictures. Perhaps you can come and see first-hand next year. Let God speak to your heart.
Good-bye to all of the July1st team. Those of us still in Honduras miss you and will be praying for your transition to serve for His Kingdom back in the States.
--Brandy Barnett & JMA