Hi there from Lebanon day 7 on the ground and what a day it was!! The team had the earliest start yet but we have Lebanese coffee to help with that. We prepared a traditional Lebanese breakfast for the kiddos that they got to wake up to. We then helped the HOH team hopefully instill a more of a family style meal atmosphere for the kids. After breakfast some of the kids and the team started making lunch which took some serious time and effort. But the kids LOVED it. Cooking, preparing, and teaching us the Lebanese way was fun for all.
Then after lunch the team split and half went to finish painting the wall and then the other took the older kids for a bike ride. We ended the night with other bonding activities which meaningful conversation were had by the whole team!
This day was by far the longest and busiest day, but also the day the whole team really bonded with the kids. It’s not a secret these kids have been through hell; you can see it in their eyes, but once they see God’s love poor out of you they open up to you, trust and truly love you. No matter what kind of personal trials you have been through you can always rely on Jesus to help you smile and rebuild your heart.
We had a full and amazing day today! This morning we split up into two projects. Kat and I went with Brady and few of the kids started on the art wall project. The kids enjoyed outlining the shapes and created a special personalized design on the stairs.
Meanwhile, Karrie, Michelle and Jim took photos and decorated photo frames with the children. They enjoyed taking the photos of themselves with their friends and house parents.
Afterwards everyone grabbed their sandwiches and headed out on the bus to the pool on the other side of Beirut. The bus trip was filled with music and dancing on the way.
The kids had a blast!! It was so beautiful to see how Brady and the houseparents interacted and demonstrated pure love to the children and to watch them respond to each other in such a sweet way. They were so sweet by sharing their snacks with us and each other throughout the day and also sharing how thankful they were by coming to us individually and thanking us with hugs and sweet words.
My heart is overfilled with love and thankful for this day!
The kindness of God has been shown to us through his most precious of all his creation, people. People who believe different things, people who look, act, and speak differently but still show kindness and love to us. The universal language of a smile and common courtesy transcends differences. We have learned that with a smile and the Spirit of God all things are possible. The Lebanese people are kind and gracious always returning a smile.
Today we painted as a well oiled machine with the children doing much of the work. It was great teaming up with the kids. The children are a joy and Brady has a wonderful way with them and his staff. We also finished sorting the large amount of donated clothes they had accumulated. No more clothes donations are needed for a while 🙂 God bless you.
Today we toured the home a learned more about how the staff of Home of Hope loves on the kids and tries to ensure that their traumatic background does not dictate their future. The work they are doing with these children is a beautiful picture of the gospel.
We helped them today by organizing a storage area that they have been wanting to get organized for a long time. We also enjoyed a lovely dinner and fellowship at Brady and Amber’s house with some of the Home of Hope team.
One theme we have been reminded of repeatedly in our time here so far is the importance of trusting God with our future. We may not know the whole plan but we need to take the next step he is asking of us and trust that he has our future in his hands.
Pray for our time tomorrow painting with the kids. Pray for good connection with the kids and that we can show them God’s love while we are working with them.
Yesterday was another full day. Brady and Amber kept us moving to help us recover from jet lag, and I’m happy to say I think we are all on Lebanon time now! We went to church with the Blacks yesterday morning and then embarked on the team scavenger hunt. We were able to see some of the touristy sights as well as the Mediterranean. And once again we had some delicious food! Through our times of wandering the city, Brady has been very purposeful about having us observe the culture around us.
We are getting ready to head to Home of Hope this morning. We are not sure of the exact schedule but we will be hanging out with the kids and working on some projects around the home today.
Thank you so much for your continued prayers! The next 5 days will be full of challenges and joy and we are grateful to know we have so many of you praying for us and the children.
Apologies from the team for not updating you yesterday, but we were like zombies!!! The Blacks did great in keeping us moving, but as you can imagine, we were not all mentally there [after such a long two days of travel]! After a little five hour-ish nap, we started off the “day” in the Armenian part of Lebanon with a family style lunch that was AMAZING!! Then the Blacks let us go off on our own with a scavenger hunt!!!! SO COOL!!!
Poor Jim! All the ladies wanted to shop, but then we found some sweet goodies to keep him occupied. Then we went to the Dubai of Lebanon and walked around some more. We finished off the day with another family style dinner…SO GOOD!!! Most of us crashed for about 12 hours afterwards!!! Today church and more exploring with the Blacks. Keep the prayers coming; God’s presence is here!!!