First Thoughts from two students

Avery Symons:

Wow, amazing, hard work, and beautiful are just a few of the words I could use to describe this trip and it has only been 24 hours. Coming in to this trip I was super excited and had a ton of expectations, but once we landed, I dropped my expectations and prayed to God asking him to lead me through this trip and provide opportunities to show his love. The amazing thing is I have already seen my prayer being answered. Today I mixed, poured, and transported cement which was not an easy task. Mixing and pouring were not hard but as soon as the cement was in the wheelbarrow it was all downhill…literally. We had to wheel it down a very steep hill. At first, I thought I had the hang of it but the more I did it the wheelbarrow got harder to move. Before lunch I was almost down the hill and I spilled more than half of the cement, which is bad once but no I did it twice. I felt so bad, but everyone was like it’s fine your all good. But I had already decided that I was done. I did not trust myself at all wheeling it down for the rest of the morning, but after lunch we got different wheel barrows that were a lot easier to move. Then I decided I was going to try again. I told myself Avery you can do this, so I said a quick prayer asking for strength. After that I did not spill another wheelbarrow again. Why am a sharing this well to be honest I have no idea because it is a very embarrassing story, but what I did realize and what I think God was trying to teach me was that this week is not going to be perfect like I thought it would. I’m probably not going to do everything right, but today God showed me that when I lean on him things go much better.

Deanna Mathis:

Hi all! Yes, all is well. No, none of us have accidentally drank the water yet. Nothing too exciting happened last night when we got in, so I’ll skip to this morning. We traveled through Quito to get to Dunamis after breakfast and got right to work digging holes, carrying rocks, mixing cement, and (the most difficult task of all) holding polls in place. We worked, ate lunch, and then worked even more until the sun started setting. Dunamis just continues to grow and coming from a 3rd year Ecuador kid it has changed A LOT. We were gathered in the living room of a building that was just bones the first year I came, and now people can live here. It’s been a really tiring day and the elevation is wearing us all down I’m sure but after hearing the missionaries’ testimonies tonight, I’ve realized this is the best kind of exhausted. I’m so excited for more tiring days like this. I’m so proud of my team after today and cannot wait to spend the next week with them!!

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