What a month!
In the past month, we’ve had two work teams visiting with YL, two groups visiting through Joel’s work, middle school basketball games, and more…not to mention that full time teaching job. While I am physically and emotionally exhausted and deeply saddened by MSU’s loss today, I can look back with contentment over the crazy month of March.
While I missed being on the ground all day every day with the work teams, I was still able to share most dinners with them, along with great conversation. I was especially impressed with the depth of relationship formed this year between group members, our staff, and the communities.
Our high school friends stayed at (and got kicked out of) a local seminary that has a huge soccer field. We were able to invite Vida Joven friends in to take part in the Vida Joven Classic – gringos versus guatemalans. The first game ended in a time, after which Fito informed me, “we just want to have fun. If we were playing to win we would have won by a lot.” Well, the tie gave the gringos confidence and they started talking…and in game 2 the Guatemalans shut them down big time.
On the surface, it was simply a soccer game. But the team was deeply impacted by the interaction they had with teenagers that they never would have known outside of this week in Guatemala. In fact, it was the highlight of the week for many of the Tulsa kids.
The second group came from DePaul University Young Life – 6 wonderful women and one brave man. Said brave man was pulled away from concrete mixing to help Fito put on a roof. After finishing the work, Fito, Charlie, and Adam sat down with an orange pop and “hung out.” Adam said, “I didn’t understand a word they were saying but I felt like we were friends. No, I knew we were friends.”
In my mind, the image of Adam, Fito, and Charlie sipping Mirinda and hanging out is an image of hope – hope for change, hope for redemption, hope for a better here and now.
Thanks, friends, for coming and serving!