January 4, 2012

Sunshine and eye-openers

Barrie HANDS Team:

We're glad to report that our second day of work went well.  We started the day with another good breakfast and we were especially encouraged by reading the blog comments out loud.  Thank-you for those who've written!

Our thoughts and prayers are with Natasha, who's friend and co-worker Alisa was killed in a car accident in Barrie on Tuesday.  Natasha took a quiet morning at home today, and Alicia stayed with her for company.

Yesterday everyone got used to the jobsite, so today we picked up where we left off.  Most of the work revolves around getting the concrete beams for the second-floor roof all framed and filled with rebar (see last photo of yesterday's blog).  We've been told that it's so much work we won't even be around for pouring the concrete.  Too bad, but it's also gratifying to know that we're just one of many contributions to a project, a true Kingdom of God endeavor that's involving so many from the global body of Christ.  Plus the construction employs two Belizeans on a nearly full-time basis, and there are now 11 teachers for the 220 students.

We learned alot again today about the school and neighborhood.  The church and school are right in the middle of the community, so the walk to school is much closer than the 1 1/2 mile alternative.  It's a true expression of Jesus' incarnation.  Another eye-opener was when Manuel, the friendly young construction supervisor, told Alicia to pitch all the broken wood out the second story into the swamp.  Someone asked how the (very close) neighbors would react to all the garbage being pitched so close to their homes.  It turns out any usable wood would be gleaned for use on their homes, or else to burn for cooking.  Any remaining garbage isn't seen as a problem at all.  In fact it's a solution to the swampy land the homes are build over.  No one can afford truckloads of sand and gravel, so the hope is that eventually enough things will fill it in. 

Over lunch several of us played games with the local kids.  It was wonderful how well some of the young girls got along with Keaton, Natasha and Megan.  The day wrapped up with dinner, devotions, and some good laughs and conversation in the living room.  Thank-you for following along with how we're doing and keeping us in your prayers.  You've been in ours, too.


Cheryl, Nikki & Sydney
Jan 4, 2012 at 11:50 pm

Its so good to hear things are going well! Tash, we're so sorry to hear of the loss of your friend. Keeping you in our prayers and sending hugs!

Jan 5, 2012 at 9:26 am

Sounds like all is going well..Even the weather is cooperating for you..We have gone from minus 19 on Monday to plus 4 tommorow !! All is well here...Praying for safety for the team as you become His ambassadors !!!

Jan 5, 2012 at 10:15 am

Praying for all of you, and thankful that things are going well with your work! We will continue to pray for safety and God's blessings in and through you!

Jan 5, 2012 at 11:54 am

Looking through the pictures it is hard to imagine the living conditions that the locals live in. The building and your work there is a blessing indeed. Keep up the good work.

Jen, Rachel, Taya & Mikayla
Jan 5, 2012 at 2:08 pm

Natasha - I'm so sorry to hear about Alisa. I'm praying for you!!

Rennie, Tyler, Leah, Ryan, & Matthew
Jan 5, 2012 at 6:09 pm

We all enjoy following along with your trip by reading the blogs. Thanks for sharing. We will continue to keep you in our prayers.

Jan 5, 2012 at 7:40 pm

Blessings on your work. I trust you are earning your pay. Did Cor get his suitcase? Sad news Natasha and so far away. Our prayers are with you all.

Canada juniors won bronze this afternoon. Habs have started their miracle turn-around.

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