Two Weeks of New Experiences, Adventure and Service

About two weeks ago, I sat on my couch nervously awaiting my taxi that would drive me to the airport to meet my first ever short-term team. After a late arrival, the next day a group of 29 college students jumped right into the adventure of serving in Ibarra. It began with a prayer walk around the city to ask God to prepare not only our hearts but also the hearts of the people of Ibarra for what was to come.
Every morning started with an early breakfast at the hotel, which consisted of the normal Ecuadorian bread, eggs, fresh juice and coffee or hot chocolate. We then began our ministries with prayer and preparation. Throughout the day, my job would be to care for anyone who was not feeling well and coordinate with them if they were staying back at the hotel with whatever they needed (Believe it or not this kept me a lot busier than I intended). I would also be a second set of eyes and hands for Extreme on the project.
On the first Monday of the project, we headed to a local preschool in a humbler neighborhood in Ibarra. Part of the group laid cement for a sidewalk, some painted playground equipment and others painted a new mural. While this was going on, I led eight students who are interested in the medical field to do 36 checkups on the kids at the daycare along with education on hand washing and tooth brushing. It was a blessing to see all these children’s smiling (or in some case crying) faces and their parent’s eagerness to hear more about simple health and hygiene topics.
Overall, the focus of this team is “momentum” for the 40/40 s, the pastoral staff, the church and the city of Ibarra. It was a wonderful time and an amazing opportunity to work with such incredible people both from the side of the 40/40s and the college students. All 29 college students had amazing attitudes and they battled on through some upsets, different cultural and language barriers as well as traveler’s diarrhea. The team put on multiple events for children in various parks, helped the 40/40s with various projects, prayed for people outside and inside of hospitals, visited an orphanage and care facility for the elderly and overall shared their love of Christ with the people of Ibarra. It was amazing to be a part of the trip and to see not only myself grow in Christ, but the people of the team and their hearts for God and His ministry.

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Author: Krista

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