The Lady Bisons are spending seven days on a mission trip to Managua, Nicaragua as the team of 13 serves the people there.
Friday night we received the good news/ bad news about our flight being cancelled. Although I am happy to get home and share to my family about this week, the news of our flight made me so happy. I had never left the country before this week and I was also very doubtful and scared about this whole mission trip. Now I feel like one week wasn't long enough. Especially since this one week ended up being the best week of my life. The day we were supposed to be spending on planes was instead spent with more laughter, happiness, and service. To start the day we got to ride down the Hope Road. What started it all. A road that sparked a fire in people's hearts. People just like us. It was amazing to see what they had done. Built a road for a community so they would be able to leave during the rainy season for school, work, grocery shopping etc. We walked through what looked like a tropical forest filled with coffee beans, coconuts, mangos, limes, and my favorite, avocados. The people showing us around were so generous to cut down coconuts for us to drink and avocados for us to eat. This was just our morning!
Then we traveled to the church plant where earlier this week we swam in the baptism pool with the kids. We decided to go on a walk through the community to pray for each family. A few of the boys who had been playing on the basketball court walked with us. The first house we came to was a woman living with her five kids in a house the size of an average bedroom. They were a part of the church and were delighted to be prayed over. It was a beautiful moment when Lauryn prayed over them in Spanish. She had been using her talent of knowing the language and her love for others all week and it was amazing hearing her pray over them in their language. The next house we went to belonged to three sisters. Two of them are only 14 and 10. The 14 year old explained to us how she had to quit school after 7th grade. This really hit me hard. I thought about the 10-year-old girls I give golf lessons to back home. How different they are living but they are all still happy and beautiful children of God, just born in a different country. They took us to the shade because they saw how hot we were and we prayed over them. We went to a couple more houses and prayed over more families, then we were going to head back but decided to go to one more house. The boys who tagged along suggested which house to go to next. At this house lived a 92 year old woman named Hilda (She didn't look a day over 70). She explained to us how she has been losing her sight, hearing, and strength. However she remains faithful and hopeful and wakes up at 5 every morning to worship God. She told us her story, getting married at 15 and staying with him until his death 5 years ago as well as her 15 children. She held each of our hands as she encouraged us to remain faithful in our journey with God.
When we told her we wanted to pray over her the most beautiful thing happened. Her frail 92 year old body got down on her knees. She said that she can barely walk because she has no strength but God gives her strength to get back up of her knees every time. At 92 she calls herself a child of God and her faith is still growing. Shannon asked to lay a hand on her forehead and pray over her. Hilda got back down on her knees and we followed. It was one of the most beautiful sights I have ever seen.
After that, we talked a lot about not leaving the mission trip behind when we get back home. I will always remember how I felt playing with all the kids and seeing the happiness in their faces and how they made me feel like a kid again. I won't forget how happy a community got when their prayers were answered because of the work we did for them. I will take back with me how God worked through me and the rest of these amazing girls. I will take back all that I've learned, to love with all my heart, to be patient and kind, and mostly to live like a child.
Also I really want to say how amazing my team is. They all have such beautiful hearts and wonderful spiritual gifts and talents from our God that shined through them all week! It was very special watching them use them all week as well as watching them grow in their faith.