Hola friends, family, and others who happened to have stumbled upon our blog.
I am happy to say I am writing to you from a giggling, slightly too loud for what time it is, girl’s dorm in The City of Children. Our travels were smooth, and I smile as I struggle with where even to start to begin to tell you about our day.
We met early at BNA and checked into our flight. Before we knew it, we had been prayed over, scanned through, and we were a couple thousand feet up in the air jetting our way toward Sand Diego. Once we landed in San Diego, we made a necessary trip to the all-important Inn-N-Out where we all ate way too much and loved every minute of it.
I am happy to say this is point at which I met my first friend, our bus driver Jose (but he smiled and told me to call him Chu). I told him my name was McCarley (but I smiled and told him he could call me Mac). Chu was kind enough to help us maneuver the always-chaotic process of crossing the border with relative ease, and we made our way into the hustle and bustle of Tijuana.
We kept ourselves entertained for the next two hours as trekked South toward Ensenada with crumbling houses and poverty to our right and the stunningly blue Pacific Ocean to our left. The contrast of the two always seems to cause the need for pause.
Once we pulled into The City, we all breathed a sigh of relief. We finally made. Being a newby on this lovely trip, I did not realize how odd it was to make it to The City while it was still light outside. Not only was it still light, we were a whole hour ahead of schedule. Because of this, we were able to unpack and then go play with the kids for an hour before dinner.
A group stayed with the mediano boys down the hill and played soccer and tag around the playground. A couple of the rest of us headed up the hill to meet some of the girls. We too quickly got roped into a game of “Mexicans vs. Americans” soccer. You can imagine who won. We got demolished, but it was not without a lot of laughter coming from both sides.
You will quickly learn that in my family, food is a staple, so I definitely plan to tell you about dinner. Two words: Meat Funnel. We went into Ensenada to a local taco shop that is legendary among the GWYG. We stuffed our faces with tacos, paletas (homemade popsicles), and Mexican Coke-which is absolutely better than stuff we have at home. I had a carne asada taco and a chorizo taco (Dad, that one was for youJ)
Then, we headed back to The City which is when my two favorite parts of the evening occurred. When we got back, the oldest girls and boys in The City came out to play with us. I know it sounds simple, but the next two hours or so were filled with laughter that makes your stomach hurt, pretty competitive games of 9 square, and bonding with the people we would be spending the rest of our week with. It was beautiful. In that moment it did not matter that most of us did not speak the same language or that some of us had only met for the first time 5 minutes before; in that moment we were all joyfully celebrating the love of God together through games, laughter, and smiles.
The kids had to go to bed at 8, so we headed over to the gym for the nightly singing. Back in January when I mentioned to Don Hudson that I was thinking about going on this trip, the singing in the gym every night was the first thing he brought up. There were some pretty high expectations set from day 1.
My expectations were blown out of the water; I have come to learn that that is one of God’s specialties. Tonight as we sat in the dark, singing our hearts out, calling upon our creator, we all were blessed with a glimpse of heaven. What a beautiful place it will be.
The girls and I are about talk for a bit about where we saw God today before we go to bed. After today, I gladly anticipate the ways in which He will show Himself to us over the next 6 days. After all, it is only day 1.
Posted on Sun, May 28, 2017
by James Lane