Wow. I just wanted to say THANKYOU. That you for your encouragement, from writing to me when I take ages to reply, for updating me on the BIG things that are going on and also the smaller details that I love to hear about. It is so encouraging to know that the girls here have so much more than me and my prayers but there are prayers of so many people for them and for myself! I feel really loved and just, thankful for the support. Today at Life Training we were talking about God's will for our life: basically, to grow (our santification) and to go (out to the world, making disciples) and it suddenly hit me. (What?) That if I want to disciple, want to make disciples, this is like the best opportunity to do it, the conditions are perfect. No, I don't work at Walmart but I live, eat, sleep, learn and play with these girls. Normal discipleship probably looks like meeting up once a week and seeing each other semi-routinely but this is like, intensely intentional. I sort of knew it, but I am encouraged to really pour myself into this more and to not just want to make disciples, but that the girls would be discipled to be disciple-makers. So that at the end of the summer they are not just encouraged to look towards Christ and the gospel but encouraged to point others towards Christ and the gospel! Thus they will grow and go at the same time!
On a sad note, Rachel went home on Wednesday just because of hard stuff going on at home that she needed to go back for, and she won't be coming back. It was hard to get through last week but by the start of this week I was more mentally prepared for it. We woke up at 4.30am, dropped her off and went to bed at 6am (till 8am). We miss her and for some reason one person less makes the room seem alot emptier. But we were confident this is where God wants her and it's not like she hated Project, she wanted to stay.
That night, the first night after staff left there was "no curfew (11pm) until you get wet". So basically, we had to stay on the grounds and run about and hide until the team leaders/project directors hit us with a water balloon/super soaker/bowl/cup of water. Last year I decided I would get in a bin bag (with a breathing hole of course) and just lie in the pile of bags that is usually beside the dumpster (coz it is always full) (dumpster = like a massive bin) but when I went to scan out the area there were no bags and the dumpster was only 1/4 full. So after thinking about it, I got armed with lots of Walmart bags, my mp3 player and phone and at 10.45pm I subtly went over by the dumpster "talking on my phone" and when no one was looking, opened up the lid and climbed in. I made space in the back corner and sat on bags and put bags over my legs and a big one over me and listened to music. 11pm came and went and there were screams and shouting and I kept expecting someone to come and open the dumpster (last year I hid behind it and they opened it and then found me after) (hence the bags with me to disguise myself) and then the leaders went round the front to get more people. So I waited. Midnight came and went and I still heard voices. 12.15. 12.25. I heard footsteps and thought this was the hardcore searching time (couple of years ago a guy was hiding on the roof and the leaders pulled everyone out their rooms to look for him at 12.30). So I aimed to stay there at 12.30. No one. So I then, everytime a car went past (and made noise), moved to a standing position (bags make a lot of noise) and at 12.35 climbed out. Everyone was asleep, lights off, the game was over. So I was technically free to not go to bed since I was dry so I sat out on the deck and watched the sea for 10 mins. And then was tired so had a shower (necessary) and went to bed just after 1am. 5.30am was the prayer team for the India team (a team going to India next Thursday that all went to Project last year and came for a week to encourage us for our missions themed week and be encouraged). So prayed for them (and met other people who had been hiding till 12 and then gave up coz no one was looking and went to bed) and then went back to bed at like 6.30am slept in till almost 11am!! NICE. So that was my lie-in day. That's my fun event of the week. =). And kids in shanty towns can spend hours in rubbish so I wouldn't die doing it for 2 hours.
On a GREAT, EXCELLENT, AMAZING note - I am working at Fire and Ice!!! I went in on Thursday to do some banking and James called me over to the back explaining they wanted to give me a job and Sarah (his daughter, who runs the place) wanted me to be there! Instead of getting a job for the 3 of us, they just wanted one person who could learn everything so Sarah could get some time off! So that'll be me! And they are looking at another job for Ben and Zara and hopefully by Tuesday it'll be sorted out! So it'll be me volunteering, and then giving donations to Campus Outreach. Basically, I love it. It's a coffee/ice-cream shop so I have been learning the coffee trade (one caramel macchiato? of course!) and I feel like scooping ice-cream for people would make me happy so I am happy to scoop ice-cream for people =D. I am the first person working them outside the family (James and Caroline; parents, their daughter, Sarah and their grandson, William) so they keep saying I am adopted and I am to make myself at home and help myself to whatever, and James even said that if I was ever in need, to ask for whatever I needed. They are the nicest people ever. I don't know how I'll ever work anywhere else after this. So I am getting 30 hours a week. And absolutely loving it. I'm going to take my camera in to get photos so they'll be up on facebook soon.Pray for them, they would call themselves Christians but I don't know if they have a relationship with Jesus. May I be wise and loving and make the most of every opportunity there.
So happy days for that! At the moment I am in Atlanta Bread and Allie and I have been here for almost 3 hours. I had a bread bowl with soup (sooo good) and we talked for ages and are now just chilling. =). Day of rest! There has been a cold going round and Jo had it, Kelli had it and now I have got it (this explains the blog title). Libby is fine up till now. Silly me for not bringing Lemsip but this day of rest is helping. Will still be taking Perspectives with Ben and Zara and now we are on the history of missions which is really exciting to read about. I am getting more time around the girls for one-on-one's and it' s such a joy to see them grasp another truth of the gospel, or get excited about studying the Bible or just hang out with them and get to know them as people. So compared to last week's distress/rest, the end of this week has been good. Although now I have work as well so am more busy and have to plan ahead to make sure I meet up with them.
Time is flying, it is already July... oh boy, don't let me get onto how patriotic church was today (no I did not pledge allegiance to the American flag but I do desire that God would bless America so sang along with them) and there'll be some good fireworks tomorrow!
Thanks for reading, and may you be encouraged!