Brazil 2016

Friday, July 29, 2016
 I genuinely believed I would not be in Brazil this year. (Click on Brazil below to read more about the missions over the previous 5 years).   It's a good thing I have wiser friends and a big God who intervenes in my worldly thoughts.  It's a long story, but the short version is my house is literally falling apart (roof, new ac unit, plumbing back up etc), and I am currently holding my car together with duct tape (I wish I were making that up).  There have been family circumstances that require a lot of attention and I just thought....not this year.  I didn't see a way.  I told the team I wasn't going.  Twice.  One member put a deposit down for me, and then a few good friends that know my heart, and believed in the mission long before me blessed me and I found myself in Brazil.  It was a bumpy ride (plane delay upon plane delay, boat delays due to paperwork not being completed because the whole country was on vacation it seemed....all except for the military (who stopped us five times)).  There were bumps in the villages, but in the end, there was peace because I know where I was supposed to would be impossible not to know after the journey that came before.
 I love Brazil.  I consider the people I've met there family and I'm homesick for them already.  I was homesick just hours after leaving them.  Some of the best people I've ever met call it home, and meet me on this boat each year.
 I can't tell all the stories in a blog post, but I can share a few photos.  Kids holding bibles of their own for the first time, ladies getting pampered, medical and dental teams coming to villages in desperate need because an already difficult journey is almost impossible now with a chaotic country government.
 One of our team members began a Bucket Ministry after encountering all the people along the river sick from drinking the parasite rich water.  He raises funds all year for filters, and parasite medicines for each family member.  The team goes village to village and trains the people on how to use the buckets, and they also share the story of living water that last longer than the seven years these buckets promise.
 Each day the team splits up and spends time with the children (vbs and this year....water balloons), women, and men, and we also walk house to house to meet those who are unable to come to us.  I believe in missions that don't take me any further than my house, my next door neighbor, and my city, but I also know God sends us to all the nations until all have heard.  I'm blessed to get to make this journey and see the harvest God has prepared along these shores.
 The last few years we have added a Tex Mex dinner for our translators and boat crew.  When we leave, these folks remain-continuing the mission with the missionaries who call these villages home.  These are truly my brothers and sisters and I look forward to the yearly family reunion on these boat decks each year.
I'll pray about next year, but in the meantime, I pray for these folks I left behind on the shore.  I can't wait to hear updates, and I can't wait to be able to revisit these friends someday in heaven and introduce all those that made it possible to all those I got to spend a few minutes with on this side of heaven on the shores of the Amazon River.  

1 comment

Erin said...

I'm so, so glad you got to go back! What amazing friends you have that know how much you bless the lives of the people you touch. Have fun and I'm so envious!