Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Honduras Day 6: Back to Tegucigalpa

Today was a much more relaxing day. We left La Paz and headed back to Tegucigalpa for our last night in Honduras. After checking into the hotel, we took a 30 minute journey to the Valley of the Angels where we sauntered through souvenir shops.

 Upon returning to Tegucigalpa, we said our goodbyes to Ricky and Arianna, our young interpreters for the week. For the record, if there's anything in the world that is crazier than driving in Tegucigalpa, it's driving in Tegucigalpa at night! We came across this car while driving. The thought that it could have been us crossed our minds since it was in our lane of the intersection.

Since our day was low on the activity we had some space to breath. I have some observations:

First: Tegucigalpa, as the capitol city is clearly where the government money emanates out of. The farther you travel from the city, the less help there is for infrastructure, jobs, education, etc., and thus the poorer people are. La Paz is actually pretty close. The coast, where we visited in January, pretty far. But even in the capitol, there are the haves and the have nots. From beautiful homes to this tent home on the edge of a garbage strewn cliff beside the road.

Second: Austin South (and his wife, Keila...who we only got to meet today), Ricky and Arianna made our trip incredibly enjoyable. They didn't just speak for us when necessary (which was almost always for me), they got their hands dirty by working side-by-side with us. They were as much a part of the team as we are. Though Sister Edith may get (and deserve) all the credit for her loving care at the orphanage, Austin and Keila help her
do her job better and in a more sustainable way. Ricky and Arianna are the same age as Ashli and Lexi, which made the journey more fun for them as well.

Third: Though it didn't happen with everyone, God gave me Milton to love this week. One of the six boys, he stands out as the only boy who didn't "demand" his own way with any of us. I got the picture that he spends life in the background because the other boys are louder and more aggressive than he is, and they have the tendency to push their way to the front (or take what they want from him...not in a bullying way, just like older brothers might).

Every time we saw the kids, Milton sought me out. When we walked to the hot springs, Milton walked hand-in-hand, almost the entire way. When we had to cross the "Indiana Jones" bridge, he had me hold his hand...both directions. When we walked to the soccer park, again..with me. On the way back, he rode on my shoulders. At every lesson, he sat next to me and had me help him with the art projects.

When we first met, he wouldn't speak at all (at least around us), though he was always quick to smile. But by the time we left, he did speak (though I couldn't understand).

Milton was in desperate need for one-on-one attention from a positive male role model. God chose me to give that to him, and I believe it blessed us both...though I know it bless me.

Fourth: If a worship pastor from Salem; grandmas from Burns and Salem; 16- and 18-year old girls; a school teacher from Silverton; and a stay-at-home mom can make a difference...anyone can make a difference. As Sami reminded us this week...we are responsible for the loaves and fishes, Jesus turns it into banquet for thousands. What difference will you make?

Thanks for joining us on this journey. May you be inspired to take one of your own...whether it's serving in an orphanage in Honduras or serving up love in your own hemisphere.

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