Our clothes may be dirty and our bodies weary, but our hearts are full after returning from our third day of work in San Jose. It is not that often that the opportunity comes along to participate in a project with such a satisfying sense of completion in such a short period of time. We had that opportunity this week, and we are so grateful for it. The words running through my mind all day come from a prayer offered by King David when he dedicated the materials he had collected for building the temple: "But who am I, and what is my people, that we should be able thus to offer willingly?" (1 Chronicles 29:14). We may be nothing special, but we serve a God who is.
There are so many photos to share, that I will jump right in. Here is the house, la casita, when we arrived this morning. The primary thing left to do was put on a second coat of paint inside and out:
Midway through the morning, a few of us went on a shopping expedition with the family who will be living in the house. Enough money was provided with the funds raised for this house to purchase the basic necessities for the inside of the home. Shopping is not on my list of favorite things to do, but this was a fun expedition. We went to the superstore Maxi Palí and helped to fill up two carts with supplies.
View from the bus window on the return trip:
While we were away, furniture was assembled for the two bedrooms and living room.
Children came in and out to check on the progress, and to ask questions about the sorpresa that had been promised to them the day before.
While we waited, Sr. Huggins decided to climb a tree.
Finally it was time to hold the house dedication ceremony. We gathered in a circle with Pedro and Stefanie and their small daughter to pray and to share our wishes and prayers with them one by one as the house keys were handed from person to person.
The moment that the children had been waiting for also finally arrived. We taught them a few songs, and then gathered to listen to the story of Jonah.
One of our students explained (in Spanish!) how the story of Jonah connects to Jesus and God's plan for salvation:
Storytime was followed by craft time: Jonah (a bag of sand) inside the big fish (the cup):
Next we had just a few minutes to play a hilarious game:
Then it was time for a good-bye photo and hugs:
We left with promises to write letters, and hopefully, God willing, for some of us to return.