Layers of this Life

We started the morning with Matt leading a devotional.  I’ve found over the years that no matter what the topic, we always see the discussion come to life and become relevant sometime during the day.  Matt discussed the what Jesus said were the two greatest commandments, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind and soul.  The second is love your neighbor as yourself.”  You cannot love God if you don’t love people, and you truly can’t love people if you don’t love God.  Some may disagree with that statement, but we live in a broken world filled with all kinds of problems…many times “people problems”.  We must be able to see the value of another person who may not look like, or believe the same things as us, through the eyes of God.  I believe it was Dave who saw these beautiful candles on the tables and related how you can’t make a candle like this overnight.  It takes time.  Layer after layer, day after day, fire after fire.  He said we are the same.  God doesn’t get us where we need to be overnight.  We must have layer after layer of life to build us into the people we need to be.  Day after day, struggle after struggle, heartbreak after heartbreak.  We’ll never stop putting layers on our lives.  Only in looking back in life can we see the beautiful masterpiece God has created in each one of us…if we’ll allow him.

Uncle Dave

I love the team we have this year.  Everyone has been so fun to be around.  No surprise, Dave has been amazing.  You may notice in many of our photos, Dave is holding a baby.  That is Ben and Emily’s youngest daughter.  Without missing a beat, Dave volunteers to give Emily a break.  He’s been amazing.  Because of his caring spirit with both of the kids, Dave has honorably been renamed, “Uncle Dave”.  He goes way above and beyond.  Ensuring ice cream is eaten at lunch, and that the baby never cries.  Thanks Dave!

Clean Water

We installed the clean water system that Matt brought on the trip.  This system is amazing.  Basically, it uses chlorine to treat the water and kill bacteria in a very short time.  It’s not a complicated system.  It did take us longer to put it together that we hoped.  But, as the old saying goes, “Measure twice…cut once.”  So, we took our time and did it right.  We had to take a break for lunch while the water tank was filled up.  Juanito’s well is dry.  They need to dig it deeper.  I need to look at fundraising, but I think we have the money for that.  By tonight, we finally have the chlorine level to make the water safe.  We’ll keep working with it, but when we leave, Juanito’s church family and local community will have safe, clean water.  I was talking with families tonight.  Water has gotten more expensive.  People walk great distances carrying 5-gallon jugs.  They are $3 each and they use several a week.  This system will be an amazing blessing.  Way to Go Matt.  Well done!

Finishing the night

We ended the day with church.  I loved hearing Juanito preach.  The music is always great (though I wish I understood more).  I love his church and it’s people.  I always love seeing them.  We sponsored all the food.  Delicious steaks and rice.  Fun to visit with everyone.  Makes me realize how much I missed them over the past three years.  They have become more than friends…they are my family. So, the morning study came full circle.  As I stood talking with the different families as Ben translated, I realized these people are the some of the beautiful layers that make up my life.  Each one a different story, each one a different layer.  We have built houses for some, and cried, prayed and laughed with others.  I’m thankful God has them in my life.  They help make my candle burn bright. Tomorrow is the house build.  I’m so excited.  For now, it’s time for sleep!  

One thought on “Clean Water

  1. Holly Clark says:

    I love seeing these pictures and hearing the stories. Exciting to see how each person brings a gift to the day. Prayers for all you encounter on this special week!

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