Blown Away

Posted Jan 8, 2017

5 out of 10 people in El Salvador are considered to be living in poverty. 4 out of those 5 are considered to be in extreme poverty (read: no running water, etc.).

Now knowing that, let me tell you about our day so far.

The Bible study this week, which was written by the locals, is themed, “Who is First?” The themes are God first, God’s Word first, Others first, My Neigborhood first. Today the kids learned about putting their neighborhood before themselves. 

Tuty invited kids from extreme poverty to come to camp today for a party. Our kids put on the party. Each cabin was assigned a task: making decorations, making a local favorite drink, making sandwiches, making goody bags, stuffing the piñatas, coming up with the entertainment. Our kids did everything from gauntletting the incoming kids to serving the sandwiches and drinks to entertaining them from stage with games and music.  Also, all of our kids brought a toy to give away, so there was a special table with gifts that each kid could pick one and take it home.

{the sign they made}

{piñata party}

{the gift table}

This party had so many levels of awesome. 

First, is the obvious: we got to love and celebrate kids who have probably never been celebrated before! We got to feed them, give them a toy, and provide FUN for them.

Second, our kids got to practically experience what it means to love your neighbor above yourself. All week our kids had been so excited for the pinatas, but today they learned they were for the other kids and they handled it really well. They were all clapping and cheering on whoever was swinging for the piñata.

Third, it was so cool to see our kids mimic what they had seen all the counselors do this week. They formed a “gauntlet” and were jumping and screaming as the neighbor kids entered the gym. The boys on stage were basically quoting us in the mic and did exactly what they had seen us do this week. We know that campers look up to their counselors, but it was so cool to suddenly see all these little “mini mes” running around.

Fourth, the kids were entirely responsible for putting this on. They were given instruction, but they carried out all of it. It was so cool to see these kids step up as leaders when we entrusted more to them.

Fifth, one of the boys who MC’d from stage really surprised Tuty. She told me that he has been really shy last year and this year, so it was very surprising that he was on stage in front of everyone. You never know how camp will grow a kid!

Sixth, a lot of our kids had been complaining a lot this week, so it was awesome for them to see what joy is found in giving our lives away for the sake of others.

So yeah, today absolutely blew us away. Yes, we are teaching the locals how to do camp, but I would wager to say they are teaching us even more. They have been so intentional and have used so many practical examples to apply to what the kids are learning in Bible study. 

We are having a great time, we have definitely hit our stride, and we can’t believe this is our last full day of camp!

Prayer requests:

-the Gospel is being shared at club tonight: pray they would have understanding and kids could come to know Christ tonight!

-continued health and safety

Until next time,

Your Fiesta Friends

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  1. Okay wow y’all! This looks like such a blast… Pine Cove staffers seriously know how to throw a party and make everyone feel welcomed to it. How awesome is it that the joy of the Lord is being shown in smiles, pinatas, and music?! I hope y’all have all been encouraged just by working and playing together to further the Kingdom. I’m praying for endurance, health, and for anyone who might be feeling homesick. Keep it up party people, and know that you are being prayed for big time here in America!!

  2. My prayers are with you. I pray that each and every local at the service tonight will come to salvation in Christ. More specifically, I have been praying for quite some time that you individually will have the privilege to share in leading someone to faith in Christ, and with that experience and courage, continue to do that in your areas of influence back in the States.
    Thank you for the beautiful pics and updates! We LOVE it!!!

  3. Continuing to pray and love seeing what God is doing in your lives! What a blessing to BE a blessing!

  4. Awesome to hear how God’s word & love is being spread to these children & community. Praying for continual safety & health for everyone there. Can’t wait to hear all about it in person.
    Love & miss you Lilly

  5. I’m also blown away by the love of Jesus you’re all pouring out to these kids who are receiving His grace and love and pouring it out to others who may have never experienced that before. Wow, especially if some of them haven’t received Jesus in their hearts?? Learning and accepting the Gospel by living it out must be so extraordinarily convicting and sanctifying for them! It’s like how Jenny shared a few posts back about how great the spreading of God’s Kingdom is layer by layer, community by community in the most seemingly random ways. Keep on loving hard, keep serving the one true King and get home safely fam!
    Lots of love, Iris?

  6. Its so awesome seeing you all pouring yourselves into this community & loving these precious kids.
    Continuing in prayer that each of you will have Gods strength & endurance to finish strong & be a blessing to your team as well.

    Love & hugs!! Mary

  7. Okay, just sitting at my desk crying. WOW! Literally blown away by the idea and the execution of it! Man, that is awesome!

  8. I am so thankful for all the things God is doing this week- in and through you guys and the staff there and the kids! God’s word does not return void! I’m praying that you will be bold, intentional and full to overflowing with love for those you are ministering to!( especially for those who might be harder to love). I pray that you will serve and give as Jesus gives- expecting nothing in return! I’m praying for God to refresh you as you have refreshed the hearts of others! Praying for continued discleship and opportunities to learn for those who will choose to follow Christ!! Love you guys! What a wonderful blessing you have to proclaim Christ in El Salvador! Praying that you will be just as excited to share that same hope wherever you go when you return❤

  9. What a good lesson for those children on serving as Christ’s example of loving and giving. They may never have gotten outside of themselves to think of others as they survive each day. Praise God for life changing lessons and the blessing it brings to all. Hearts will be changed. Great work guys!