Just when you thought that it couldn't get any better, we had another great day serving in Costa Rica!
We arrived dressed for some crazy water games and the kids did not give us a choice about participating. They wanted us in the middle of it all! So we tried to use discernment without breaking a hip on the Costa Rican version of the Slide of Doom. Despite the use of laundry soap and bricks on the tarp, a good time was had by all. We enjoyed free time and then had some organized chaos...I mean games. It was a really sweet time with these amazing kids and they loved that fact that we were in the middle of it all!
After the water games, we had lesson time with the children. Earlier when we arrived, the young high school student who was to lead the activities of the day for the children, Joseph, approached us. Joseph wanted to ask if we could do the Zaccheus story that we had done with the students the night before and, of course, I was happy to oblige him. Little did I know that he was going to take it and run with it commanding the children's attention and explaining each detail of the story as we enlisted three helpers to enact the account. So essentially, Joseph was not assisting me...I was assisting Joseph! What a proud moment to see this young man duplicate through an unwritten code of discipleship the teaching that he had received in the student ministry the night before. The children responded well to his leadership and he did an excellent job guiding the lesson time!
Once again I am reminded of the importance of training up our children in the discipleship of service and even leading others. I pray that we can be a church that moves ever more in this direction to equip and train young people to lead others so that they do not arrive at adulthood with little to no experience with such things. Guiding them when they are young and giving them responsibilities, is one of the best things that we can do as disciples who make disciplemakers. I am convinced now more than ever more that if these poor kids in Los Guido can do so, that so can our young people. We just haven't raised the bar high enough. We make the fruit too low because we underestimate what our kids are capable of and we rush in to do things for them so many times that they miss the lessons of failure that have been so vital for many of us.
It is getting late and I'm dangerously close to rambling, but I am proud of Graham as he has stepped up and participated. You will see pictures of him in the middle of a scrum of kids grabbing for tootsie rolls as well as one of several egg breaking experiences that he had as part of his upcoming birthday celebration.
Thank you all for your prayers as God is answering them in so many ways. We can't wait to worship tomorrow with our Tico friends and see all that God has in store! We are praying as well for our Peace Haven family back home as they will gather for worship and for our family as they are dealing with some pretty horrible illness.