Wednesday was a hugely full day. We held two meetings - one in the afternoon and one in the evening, so we headed over the border pretty early in the day...no time to work in the print shop.
The bus ride...we had lots of fun on the bus. Sometimes we would sleep, other times we would call home, other times we would just talk. Talk about the meeting, talk about life...since we were such a small group a lot of times we were able to listen to Mr. Jarvis tell stories about past groups...man, does he have a lot of stories to tell! We all enjoyed being able to listen to him. One night, the rest of the group even decided to name my camera. Now, I'm not really into the whole naming my possessions kind of thing, but it was pretty funny. One morning I had my camera down in the dining hall (as any responsible photographer would...you never know when you might need it, right?), and Dan B. asked me if it was my baby. I laughed and told him it wasn't that bad. Then I told him that one of my photographer friends called her camera her "boyfriend". He was like, "that's weird", but then later that night in the bus, he was like, "well, we should name your boyfriend". So then the group started tossing out a bunch of names, most of them got turned down right away because they were so lame. They had decided it had so be a "cool, trendy, guy with slicked back hair kind of name", so I finally settled on Ross, although "Carlyle" came in a close second. So, now my camera's official name is "Ross- the Microwave Camera". The pathetic thing is, sometimes I actually think to myself "oh, I should go get Ross". =P Wow! That turned out to be a long little story...now back to Ross' pictures... ;)
A street vendor
This was on one of the sidewalks in the park that we held the first Wednesday meeting at. "Vivir Mejor" - Live Better...I thought that was cool...that's just what we were helping people do...maybe not in this lifetime, but certainly in the next.
The guys setting up tent. It was super hot on Wednesday afternoon. They set up a tent for people to stand under and also to have the puppet show under.
At times it seemed so simple...about eighty pieces of paper held together with two staples...but it's the greatest gift we could ever give them. After we went around the neighborhood on Wednesday afternoon, we also just stood on some street corners passing out the John-Romans to anyone who would take them. Most of the people would accept them- I think our group only had one rejection the whole time we were in Juarez. Not only would they take them, but they would actually stop what they were doing and read them. It was a pretty incredible sight to behold!
During testimony time, Ryan told about how he went up to one car that was pulled over to the side of the road. He thought that the driver was having car problems and he was going to give him a John-Romans. He discovered that someone had beat him to it and that the driver had pulled over and started to read it!
I think there was really a sense of urgency on Wednesday. We knew it was our last day and we wanted to get the Gospel into as many hands as we could. Just one more...just one more...
"Go reach the world, touch one more soul. Bring one more lamb back to the fold. Each voice another flag unfurled, each voice another chance to reach the world." Mr. Jarvis kept telling us all week, "you never know what will happen with the tracts that you hand out. Some guy you give it to could become a pastor and lead hundreds to Christ". I think that spurred us on even more. Someday it will be exciting to see the faces that are in Heaven because of our efforts that week. It's so awesome that God lets us play a part in His work!
I think that this is one of my very favorite pictures from the whole week. This little boy brought his sister to the meeting all by himself.
The Bruggenthies trio singing "¿Está usted lava?" (Are you washed). Every time they would start singing in English and then Hector would stop them and say "No, no, no! No Inglés, Español! No hamburguesas, burritos!" And then he would explain to the kids that he
has a key that can make them switch their voices from English to Spanish, so the guys would turn around,
and then he would "unlock" their voices and they would say "Gracias!" and start singing in Spanish.
Then when they were all done, he would switch them back to English and they would say "Thank you!".
The kids really got a kick out of it!
It was hard to see the light on the chalk-talk for the afternoon service. =/
After the afternoon service, we headed back to the church and ate lunch with the church people. They were such a welcoming church. They really tried hard to communicate with us, and there was definitely a bond formed with the people we worked with. I pray that will continue to impact their city for Christ.
Silly faces... =}
These two girls were so sweet
Ari and a bunch of chicas! =)
After our lunch at the church, we had some time before we had to get ready for the evening meeting and so we went to the Soriana which is like a big Wal-Mart type store. We had some ice-cream there and an authentic Mexican churro! Unfortunately, I left Ross in the bus, so I didn't get any pictures. =/
By far the biggest bag of cheetos I've ever seen!
More big sky...
Rossy inviting people to the meeting
Freshly painted, smiling faces!
We held our final meeting on the grounds right outside the church. I thought that was a really good idea, because not only did it give people the opportunity to see exactly where the church was, but it also gave the church body an opportunity to connect more with the people; after the service they handed out cookies and soda.
Anna holding a baby
This girl's hair was so cute. Her parents spoke perfect English, and they went forward at the invitation, so hopefully this little girl will grow up in a good Christian home!
Some of the puppeteers...Matt, Allie, and Dan
The guys swaying and clapping to "The Laughing Song" =D
Steve DeRaps and Mr. Jarvis
Our interpreter, Rossy, played and sang a song on Wednesday night.
Ryan and Dan
Hector giving the final message
After the service we went back inside the church and took a bunch of pictures. It was really hard to say goodbye! =( We had a great time working with these people. They came out of the church and waved and yelled "Adios!" until we were gone.
A few miles before we came to the border (whenever we crossed it-either side), Steve would get on the loud speaker and say "Alright folks, we're about five minutes from the border, grab a partner and pray" That was a really cool time. The bus would get really quiet and people would gather in groups to pray for a quick safe border crossing. It was usually an adventure crossing over. The first night we crossed, on the way out of Mexico, the guard who was searching the van asked us "What are you doing here, I mean really?" I think he was a little less than impressed with our answer that we were here to "Spread the Word" =) Some nights there were huge lines that we had to sit through. We had to all get out of the bus and go through security with all our bags and stuff. We had to wait inside the building until the bus got through security...sometimes that took a long time. We would amuse ourselves be reading "inspirational quotes" out of our passport books. Our favorite was an Excerpt from the Thanksgiving Address, Mohawk version. We would begin it with "How (even though it didn't really start that way) we send thanks to all the Animal life in the world. They have many things to teach us as people. We are glad they are still here and we hope it will always be so." Haha, that always made us laugh...but then again, we were tired. ;) The workers would always head through security first, and then our group. The workers would quick get on the bus, and then take turns clapping or booing as the rest of us boarded, so we would try to figure out what position to be in to get cheered. It was pretty funny.