The Final DayI woke up Thursday morning feeling a little sick and very melancholy. I wasn't quite ready for that day to be my last in General Cepeda. I didn't want to go home. I wanted to stay there indefinitely. My kids felt this way too. I'm pretty sure Travis did too, although, he wouldn't admit it. We gathered for our last breakfast, our last morning prayer, and our last work day send off as a community.
Isaac was feeling a little sick too as was about a third of our group. Many were sick either vomiting or coughing and fever. We let him stay and go back to bed, and then we headed out to our work details. Travis and Philip headed back to put the finishing touches on the roof that they had worked on all week.
|Some of the roofing crew|
The shade in the picture above was the only shade around. We took turns painting in that spot and resting in the little spot around the corner. At one point, I had lost the girls and noticed that there weren't any kids around. I found them sitting in the lady's house watching Dora the Explorer. The lady had come out to check on us and had invited the kids inside to cool off.
Later, we were invited over to one of the FMC Mexican missionary's house for some ice cold Coca-Cola. Rita and her family lived right across the street from where we were painting and had invited us to come over for a little break. We sat and enjoyed our drinks and toured her very nice home. Then headed back to finish the painting.
After finishing the painting and praying with the woman of the house, we headed back to the Mission House to pack our picnic lunch. Marta had made a ton of sandwiches, bagged cookies, and had fresh fruit waiting for us. We each grabbed our food, our Bible, and our journal and headed out for Desert Day. I had heard about Desert Day at Wednesday night Formation and in reading the FMC missionary blogs. I was looking forward to experiencing this for myself.
We all piled into the vans and headed out to an orchard (not the one we visited the previous day) to sit quietly with God for a few hours. The six of us sat under a pecan tree and had our picnic lunch as a family; then everyone grabbed their Bible and journal and headed off to find their own tree. Of course, Isaac chose the one next to the horse.
We had each been given three questions to meditate on:
1. What blessed you the most on this trip?
2. What will you take with you?
3. What will you leave behind?
As I sat under the pecan tree and looked out into the orchard, I saw what had blessed me the most, what I'd take with me in my heart, and what I'd have to leave behind---the people! I had the same answer for all three questions. I was so blessed by the friendships I had made on this trip---this community of missionaries and the people of General Cepeda and the surrounding ranchos. I was going to be taking a piece of all of them home with me, yet having to leave so many behind.
I had just spent the most amazing week of my life with a group of amazing missionaries ministering to some amazing people. How could I leave this and go home to my "ordinary" life? How could I go back to the "comforts" of home? How could I put aside the warmth that I had felt every time we gathered for meals or prayers? How could I go back to our everyday routines? How could I.........?
God was definitely stirring up something in my heart. For the past two years, He has been preparing us for something. We never exactly knew what it was, but knew He was calling us to simply our lives, to make drastic changes for something. Could this be what He had been preparing us for?
The horn of the suburban sounded interrupting my thoughts and signaling that we had fifteen minutes left of Desert Day. As I gathered up my Bible, journal, and water bottle, I noticed that sheep had moved into the area where we were. And the tears began to well up again...
This journey began with sheep many months ago with the words "Feed my Sheep" (see this previous blog), then this video had been sent to me (pay attention at the 1:55 mark), and now the trip was closing with a herd of sheep grazing near me on the final day of our trip. I couldn't help but smile, laugh, and cry! How awesome is our God!
Day 8 & 9