For those of you who may not know us, we are members of other Methodist churches in the area and have been part of the Lord’s mission in the jungle for 8 years running now. We were so blessed to have been asked to come along side Rene to lead this wonderful group of people! We have truly found so much joy in getting to know each of the team members! We have learned so much from many of the team members and only hope that we made at least half of the impact on them as they have done so for us!
Right now, it is 8:00 am EST on Saturday, June 25th. We just returned stateside along with Meghan, who is headed to catch another flight now, while our team is still south of the Equator touring the beautiful city of Quito. We have had some time to reflect and think about our trip and a few things stick out… the awesomeness of the students at Antioch Christian Academy, the dedication and passion of the local missionaries and staff at Antioch, and of course the wonderful hospitality of the staff at the Hostal el Paisano .
However, what stands out the most is the willing, ready, and resilient attitude of our team. This team has had a tough week digging ditches in the hot sun, dragging tree branches down a large, slippery hill, pouring concrete in the pouring rain, and administering VBS to the hardest class of students on the first day and then continuing to love on a new class each day learning all new names and faces. Through it all, our team remained strong and ready to work as we know that is what God called us to do this past week in the jungle. We are super proud of this team, our team!
During this reflection time, we also find that we typically hit a small “depression” phase as we return to our everyday lives with real jobs and responsibilities, but this trip seems different for us… we seem to have a peace about our return to the states that only our kind and loving Father could grant us. Yes, we are sad to leave this beautiful country and these beautiful people, and yes, we will miss the new church family members we have gained on this trip, but we both know that Ecuador will always be home for us, and that the next time we land in Quito, may just be on a one way flight.
Safe travels to the rest of our team who flies out of Quito late tonight! May your flight be smooth and the immigration lines be short!