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Celebrating the 4th of July in Guatemala

This is what we did for the Fourth of July:

            As a team we woke up very early and packed our things because we were moving hotels. We moved from Casa Lola to Hotel Paraiso before going to breakfast at a local restaurant. Even though it’s not paradise (the showers shock you and fireworks are constantly exploding nearby), this hotel is a lot better than we all expected we were going to be staying in. It even has a coconut tree where young men may entertain themselves by knocking coconuts off of it.

Eating is always an adventure, not just because of the usual pleasantries it provides, but also because we never know for certain what we are going to get. After an enjoyable breakfast we all hopped in the back of a truck and headed to Lucas’ church. Riding in the back of a truck is one of the most enjoyable experiences I’ve had in Guatemala so far. While one may think that a car ride can get rather dull, that is not the case here in Guatemala. The rides usually consist of singing, windblown hair, bumpy cobblestone roads, speed bumps every fifteen feet, and ample honking of the horn.
 
From 09gu0619amb1.myadventures.org 

            We arrived at Lucas’ church and immediately started our program for the kids. We sung many children’s songs, preformed a mini-drama about Shadrack, Meshach and Abednegoperformed a couple of meaningful and entertaining skits, and our ‘Set Me Free’ drime. We also played a few games with the kids. That day we also were privileged to visit many of the children’s houses who came to the program. We prayed over their houses and their families. They were very eager to receive prayer and glad to have us there.                    

            Later that afternoon, after eating at a local pandaria, we ministered with teenagers. We attempted to teach them our drime, which didn’t work out as well as we hoped due to the language barrier which brought some confusion. In spite of some communication difficulties, I believe that we made an impact on their lives, and know they made one on ours. Sometimes it’s just nice to talk with people who are close to our age. We left Lucas’ church and picked up some supplies for our fun-filled evening.

            We left on a boat ride to a nearby beach, which was actually pretty exciting. The lake was a little rough and our boat didn’t have windows. In order to keep water out, we attempted to hold up a large tarp all the way around the boat. We arrived at the beach where I attempted to light a fire and many went swimming. We ate roasted hot dogs along with chips, sodas, and roasted marshmallows for dessert. The food was satisfying and the experience was enjoyable.
 
From 09gu0619amb1.myadventures.org 

We came back to the hotel as the sun was setting, all of us with red, white, or blue glowsticks to celebrate the Fourth of July. Inevitably, I thought of home on that day, wondering how my family would be celebrating their independence. That night we shared about how God was working in our lives. God is doing so many amazing things here! All of us are growing in Him and advancing our relationships. Please pray that we would continue to work well together as a team and that sickness would be broken among us.

For the advancement of His kingdom,

                                                          Brennan Whitacre

                                                          (Assisted by Peter Lanning, the First)

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