Team Leader: Ashley Vantrease
Team Leader: Alan Lennon
BY Dawson Stahly
During my third mission trip to Uruguay, my heart was once again stolen by the people in the community and my life was changed forever. When we got there we went through an exhausting overnight camp for about 80 kids who regularly went to churches to help them grow in their faith and learn more about God. After the camp, we all were extremely tired, but every time a new group of kids came to the camp for a daily VBS for the remainder of the week, we would get a boost of energy and put in our best just to see the kids smile. We would give them tangible crafts as reminders of what they learned at the camp those days they came to the camp and learned about God.
Previous missions here were much more laid back and unguided as we tried to figure out what we truly wanted to work on in the country. This mission trip and the ones to follow have been chosen by God to pour into the lives of the children who are not getting more than one meal a day, that might not have a father, or have a mother selling her body to keep food on the table. Seeing those kids smile in such heartbreaking situations is truly a blessing i think everyone should experience because it will change your point of view on all our selfish needs in our own great country.
We had a devotion in the middle of the week in Psalms 46:10: "Be still and know that I am God." This message had such an impact on all of us as the children enchanted our hearts and we continued to evangelize to them and the Sunday school teachers and pastors that put in so much work for us to make it all possible for the kids.
My heart was breaking as the end of the week neared because of upcoming changes with my schedule as I get my higher education in my town. To think that shose might have been some of the last hours I was going to spend with them, I could do nothing but weep. I am going to try with everything I am, and God through me, to return and continue being blessed with the kids and staff that we spend time with. They have forever changed my life and my point of view on the world.