It is hard to believe that tomorrow it will be two weeks since Colleen arrived. The time has really passed quickly, partly due to all the things we have been doing!
The first week, we took it slow, working on several small projects around the house. One thing we have been doing non-stop since Colleen came, is making friendship bracelets for kids. We hand out little goodie bags to kids when we go into different villages, and they love these bracelets!
We also spent some time putting together the bags for kids. Each bag is filled with candy, a coloring page, some crayons, small toys and the bracelets.
These little bags many not seem like much, but to these kids, it is a reminder that we care about them, and Jesus loves them!
We also spent some time sorting clothes. The clothes were divided into piles according to size and gender. Then we made up bags that had a variety of sizes for males and females, so that one bag would be for a whole family. We have never handed out clothes in this way before, but it made things a lot more orderly, and helped us make sure we’d have enough for everyone.
Our biggest project so far, was handing out the clothes to people in a small group of houses that are near a river. These people cannot afford land of their own, and have built shacks along the river. It is really such a heartbreaking place, where the houses are so tiny, and terribly constructed. They are made of scraps of tin, or plastic, and the people are some of the poorest I have seen.
With help from Esther, we went door to door delivering the clothes, and explaining to the people, that it was a family bag. We knew that some people would receive clothes that wouldn’t fit, or that they didn’t “need”, but when we gave them the clothes, we also gave them a challenge. We told them that if they had extra clothes, that we’d like them to find someone who needs it, and bless them with it, as we have blessed them. I don’t know how many of them will actually do it, but we are confident that the clothes will not go to waste.
In addition to the clothes, we also gave each family a Bible. Colleen brought 17 Bibles with her, and we gave each one out! It is such a blessing to be able to bring the word of God to these families, most of which cannot afford to buy it on their own.
The past two weeks have been a great start to this six-week mission trip. We have been able to do a bunch of “behind the scenes” work, and are looking forward to interacting with people more, in the next few weeks. We are so thankful that Colleen has come back to serve here with us. We know that over the coming four weeks we will be able to do even more than we ever thought possible! I will continue to update our blog about the work we are doing, so be sure to check back, to hear about all the work God is doing here!