Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Doing Ministry Together is Sweet

We took both boys with us to the Dominican Republic this year. This was Michael's second time and Isaac's first trip. We flew out on Michael's fourth birthday - July 9 - and met Sam at the airport. He had just finished the basketball mission trip and was ready to dive into another one. This trip was our family trip - Sam's parents, his uncle, three cousins, a family friend, me, and the kids. Also, some great friends of ours from Indiana joined us. There were 15 of us in all!
A roof-view from the church
We partnered with our pastor and friend, Quina. She is amazing! She oversees four churches and constantly has a heart for ministry. Whoever needs help, she is there to offer it. She also cooks amazing food for our team while we are there! Yum! I'm craving some of her rice and beans now.

Sam and Dan (he's from Indiana)
We started off each morning with VBS for the Dominican kids. We taught Bible stories, sang songs, played games, and did a craft. Our theme for the week was how God is our helper. We told the stories of David and Goliath and Daniel in the lions' den. I loved seeing the kids in our family interact with the Dominican kids. They used what little Spanish they knew to communicate, but it didn't even matter. Smiles and love are universal and they shared God's love without reservation!
Michael playing one of the VBS games - pass the baseball glove!
Michael helped teach the Bible stories and songs. His favorite part was playing a sheep when we acted out David and Goliath. He was so proud of his little acting moment. Michael became great buddies with David, the son of our friends from Indiana. They were partners in ministry! Every morning, they would sit outside and watch the motorcycles and people-watch. 

Isaac did great, but had some rough moments. He was a little timid with the new people he was meeting. He also needed a nap during VBS every day. Thankfully there was a bedroom with a fan at the church! It was hot and it wore him out. Here's how our mornings looked....

Isaac also made a friend. Her name is Cristina. She was Isaac's little caretaker during our trip. She loved him and she loved taking care of him. Isaac had many moments where he would get frustrated with her because she wasn't his mommy, but he also had some very sweet moments playing with her!

Our afternoons consisted of hanging out and loving on the Dominicans. We played sports, shared some popsicles, and just shared life.

Our trip was good. It was definitely uncomfortable at times and was not easy with small children. But it was so rewarding and good for our spirits. Our kids had great attitudes and were so flexible. I love that they can experience other cultures and be thrown out of their comfort zone so early in their life. We are so blessed and I am thankful that we have the opportunity to bless our friends in the DR. They end up blessing us so much. The Dominicans are so loving and hospitable!

So, I will leave you with this....
One of the churches that we visited is Haitian. We have a special love for this church, the pastor, and for the people there. The children performed the song "Yes, Yes, Lord" in Creole, the Haitian language. It was beautiful.

Dios le bendiga! (Google that!)

*Disclaimer: I stole most of these pictures from other people - Dan, Monte, Marcia... gracias!

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