Hey there friends!
So, I have more news for you. We have moved from our treehouse. I miss our squatty potty, no lie. One of my teammates has hearing aids, and the constant humidity, no air conditioning thing was taking a toll on them. So we moved to a HOTEL. I honestly felt like I was cheating the first few days. Although, my back is loving the mattress. The only thing is that we’re surrounded by buddhist temples and monasteries in this area. For the past week we’ve woken up super early to chanting on an outdoor intercom that can be heard for a few blocks. I’m talking, 3am early. Who the hell gets up that early to worship Buddha? Seriously. This chanting goes on ALL DAY. We’ve put up with it for a week, and good news is it only goes for another week. Apparently the buddhists are chanting to ‘send over ancestors who are lingering in this world.’
Anyways, when we got to the hotel, we just felt a sort of heaviness, so we prayed over the hotel and over each of our rooms and it’s been much better.
So, we had a very successful first week of ministry! I’m just going to paste from my journal on my netbook of this past week:
We are halfway through our first week of ministry and I am already in love with these girls.
Today, Kori (one of my team mates) lead a bible study in the morning, about the Gospel, God’s love story to us. She told them (with the help of a translator) that they are beautiful and loved women of God. It was so powerful seeing the Holy Spirit work through her. Around 5-10 girls accepted Christ into their heart! It was the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen. Tomorrow, we will continue the story of the Gospel, I can only pray that more girls will accept Christ as well.
God has been so crazy awesome in speaking through my love language to these girls! Today we handed out flyers for the centre advertising free English classes (which it turns out, we will be teaching as of next week). When we were walking down the street we would link arms, or hold hands, or rub someone’s back and ask her how she’s doing, despite it being hot and humid outside; things one would only do with her best friend, and we’ve only known them for a few days. I connected most with a couple girls named Tina and Chandy. Barriers of different spoken languages had no effect at all in bonding with these girls. When we got back to the centre, after eating lunch, we hung out in the church on site and played games. A girl came up to me, snuggled real close and we went through my camera pictures together. Afterwards, she grabbed my hand, drew a sunrise on my finger, and laid her head in my lap. And later, when we took pictures she had her arms completely around me. I’m guessing it’s safe to assume her love language is the same as mine? It’s wonderful. I love these girls. God loves these girls.
How am I here? How is God so crazy awesome to love me so much and send me here?
We have had a very successful first week of ministry! I love it here; I don’t want it to end. I still can’t believe it’s only been a week and we’ve already bonded so much with the girls. It’s crazy how God’s love works.
I thought I should tell you what it this week has looked like. There are a few neighbourhood kids who hang around the centre. One is Sotan, he is probably around 13. There is also Pierum, who is approx. 10-12. These boys have definitely won our hearts. We love them and their English is quite excellent, so it’s easy to communicate with them or if we need them to translate for us to some of the girls. There are the really wee ones too, Mong, and his friend, whose name I can’t remember, are around 6. These boys have so much energy it’s enough to scratch your head at how they don’t tire out at all. Then there are the little girls who live at the centre. Kim-Lang is twelve. I sure hope she’s there as a precaution to keep her out of trafficking. I don’t know if I could handle it she was put through that hell. She’s got such a great energy about her. Her English is also very excellent. She also knows the Gospel, which is so great to see. Then there is Jet-Yun, who is the younger sister of Tina. She’s around five. Jet-Yun’s so cute and full of smiles. She will hold onto your hand all day and not let go. Then there is Sammy, a very tiny two year old boy who has Downs syndrome. This little one is so precious, all of us love him to pieces.
Last night, I had a dream about my dad, so I woke up missing him a lot. I was kind of mopey this morning, so I asked Elle and Kendall to pray over me so I would have energy today for ministry. I also asked God to romance me today. Wow, did he ever.
When I got to the centre, I was bombarded with lots of hugs from the little ones. Later on I hung out with Tina and Chandy, a couple of girls at the centre. They were so great, once again communicating through touch, and learning words in Khmer from them, which is an ongoing occurrence. We also went to the market today. It was a great walk with them, despite the heat. And the sunshine piercing through the palm trees was a sight I haven’t seen in a while.
I’ve learned that some of the girls at the centre have been rescued from human trafficking, and some are there to prevent them from being trafficked. I also found out that the girl from a couple days ago I spent time with was brought to the centre from an orphanage. Both her parents died, and when she got to the centre, she was quiet and wouldn’t talk to anyone, avoiding any social interaction. But once we arrived she’s been a complete ray of sunshine. That just blows my mind.
I can’t wait for next week’s ministry to begin. We will be starting off the week by picking up trash around town. Fun, eh?
I will be posting some pictures in another post so stay tuned!