Oh boy, what a day! Well, as most of the team has expressed, today has felt longer than a typical day, simply because of the lack of sleep. But that doesn’t prevent us from having fun! Our first day really started when we all arrived in the Quito airport, coming from Dallas. After arriving at the lovely house where we were to stay, we had a team meeting and debriefed on today’s events. Long story short, we had a pretty late bedtime and an early morning, but we were all in good spirits at breakfast! As soon as I got here, I liked Quito immediately — the people, the music, the language, the flowers, green mountains surrounding us — there was almost nothing that didn’t put a smile on my face. Most of all, the team absolutely fell in love with the kids we were ministering to and the translators we spent time with. We arrived at the church, 7:30am, to do games, lessons, and crafts with the kids while the parents attended a seminar. We also included a funny skit in the morning’s events that gave a great message about how God is just and merciful. The language barrier did not at all create any relationship barrier with these kids: they seemed to enjoy us as much as we enjoyed them! Their smiles, laughs, and chatter were contagious, and we loved every second we spent with them! Pulling together a program almost literally overnight wasn’t easy, but it was worth it. Our team hit the ground running, exhilarated to share the message of the gospel with these children of Quito. There was not a dull moment with them.
However, hitting the ground running did give us quite the exertion. After 1:30pm hit and the parent seminar was over, we practically crashed at lunch time. We started to feel the lack of sleep, and talked about how wonderful naps would be. Well, turns out, our schedule was already set for the rest of the day: after lunch came shopping in the marketplace, and then back to the church to teach the kids a Bible lesson during the Saturday night church service. As much as we wanted those naps, we put on our Spartan warrior faces and fought off the sleepiness as best as we could. Boy, did we have a blast the rest of the day! From bartering with merchants, to searching for a good coffee shop, to doing the Saturday night lesson with the kids, we were kept on our toes! We did finally make it back to house, very tired, but very happy.
Quito, of course, is quite different from the U.S., but I guess that’s the wonder and fascination of it all. God made us all different, yet He created us all unique with different sets of gifts to use for His glory. I am so excited to see how God will continue to use us in Quito, Ecuador, and I am beyond stoked as I look forward to seeing God’s amazing power at work within us.