Ahhh, fresh air. Well, at least, sort of…. We have entered our last week of school and finals. For several of my students school has already ended because they were exempt from tests because of their class averages. So, classes are half empty (or half full, depending if you are an optimist or pessimist I guess) and reviews are taking place. My grades are caught up, my tests are already made, and soccer is over. Life is slowing down to the speed of light and I feel like I can breathe again. At least for a couple of days that is.
The summer mission trips are here and the bullet train is leaving the station. Nathan and his team are already in Honduras. They left Saturday and will be there until May 30th. The inaugural Torch trip to Brazil leaves June 4th. I am both nervous and excited. Our team will consist of 22 from Florida, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Georgia, and Texas. WE have 5 interpreters that speak fluent Portuguese and one very excited Danny Bratcher.
Danny left Monday afternoon for Recife, Brazil, SA. He is moving down there to become a full time missionary. He is an amazing guy with one of the biggest hearts I have ever met. He sold his possessions, went to Sunset School of Preaching, earned his degree, and is about to do what he has dreamed of for several years. Many of us that are reading this story are jealous. He is doing what a lot of us wish we could do. But, for the rest of us, we rejoice in the fact that we get to spend a couple of weeks doing what we love to do too. And for 22 of us, we get to do it with Danny.
Torch Missions has blessed so many lives. In so many different ways. But I think in every way it has helped us all to see the importance of our relationship with God and with each other. God’s kingdom is so big, so vast, and even though we all play just a small, small part, collectively the work is huge. We can never truly understand nor comprehend the worth of sharing the good news about Christ and showing the love of him through simple everyday actions and deeds. For the treasures of the earth do not compare to the wealth of just one soul.
OK, for the Brazil team, here is a news update for you. Remember, you can take 2 pieces of luggage on the trip. Plan on 1 suitcase for your clothes and stuff, 1 needs to be filled with toys, stuffed animals, crayons, paper, jump rope, and give away stuff. Bags need to weigh 50 pounds or less. Make sure you bring 2 sets of sheets and pillow cases for a twin size bed (that we are going to leave for the bible camp) and 2 towels (we will leave them also). If you have not done so yet, please send me a copy of your flight itinerary so I can make sure Danny knows when we are all arriving in Recife. If you have not send your final payment to me, I need it ASAP or you need to bring it with you in the form of cold, hard cash! Plans are falling together well and we are going to have a great trip!
For those going to Honduras, your final payment is due. Please make your checks payable to Western Hills Church of Christ / Torch Missions. I will be ordering lumber for our houses very soon and will be making our reservations at the Mission House and paying deposits. Any last changes with team numbers, names, etc., need to be made at this time. Otherwise, it looks like we are good to go.
We will be blessed this summer by having Tim Hines and Marc Tindall in Honduras. For those who may not know, Marc, and his wife Teri, are moving to Honduras to begin full time work. The Tindall’s is yet another family who has sacrificed greatly to go do kingdom work. What a blessing it is to see God at work through so many people!!!
May God continue to bless us all as we endeavor to work for Him. Keep your eyes focused on the cross and look ahead. “What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson