It’s hard to believe that this was our last full day in Honduras. People say “Time flies when you’re having fun”. A more fitting spin on that would be that “Time flies when you’re working hard”. These past couple days we have worked day in and day out, whether it be helping at a local church or building a house. As this trip comes to a close I thank our Lord for this amazing opportunity, this opportunity to meet amazing people, to do amazing things, and to do amazing things for these amazing people. We’ve been humbled by the people that we’ve met, and these past couple of days I’ve come to realize how truly blessed we are, and the importance of using these blessings for the benefit of others.
We started the day early, not wanting to waste a single bit of light that the Lord had blessed us with on this day. As always breakfast was amazing at “La Casa Grande,”giving us enough energy for the busy day that we had ahead of us. Shortly after eating breakfast it was back to the hotel rooms to pack up the last of our belongings, load the truck, get on the van, and head out to our next destination.
Our next destination was the house that we had just finished building the previous day. The Guevarra family had just spent their very first night in their new home, and Serve Hope wanted to bless them with a good first breakfast. It was a touching moment to see that what the family had dreamed of for so long, having just been accomplished. To know that we were a part of making their dreams come true, to make something that seemed unattainable to them, become something that was now tangible and their own is absolutely amazing. As such it only makes sense that a great night’s rest should be accompanied by a great morning. We dropped off breakfast at the Guevarra family’s house, as Olga prayed over us, thanking us for all that we had done, and making her dream come true. I wish I could simply say that it was a “touching” moment, and it was certainly that, but it was also something so much more intense, so much more beautiful. In that moment, I felt the Lord’s presence, smiling that his children, coming from all different backgrounds, were now one family, one people. After the prayers we said goodbye to the family, gave out hugs, smiles, and high fives.
After leaving the house, we went to the recreation center where we would be spending most of our day with the EduCafe students. We were greeted by smiles and “Hola”s. Our group went around shaking hands, and introducing ourselves. They were more than happy to introduce themselves as well, and despite the language barrier I felt that our introductions went really well. We sang songs, the cool thing about the songs were that while they were in Spanish they were still the Spanish versions of songs that are already pretty well known in America, such as “Yes Lord” and “This is Amazing Grace”, so we were still able to sing along and build a deeper connection to the EduCafe students. Following that we went outside to play some games. All the students and members of our group were separated into 4 teams: Red Team, Yellow team, Blue team, and Green Team (AKA the best team, though I might be biased). All the games involved us running around, and was a great way to better understand the students. The great things about the games was that no in depth conversation was necessary. We were able to get to understand each other through our actions rather than our words.
After we finished the games we headed back inside for a sermon by our very own Pastor Jared. The sermon was amazing, and I’m not ashamed to say that I may or may not have shed a tear. Jared stressed the importance of committing your life to the Lord, to make the Lord the center of your life, and to do it as soon as possible. Following that our translator, and all around amazing person, Christian, asked the EduCafe students to stand if they were ready to commit their lives to Jesus Christ. A number of students stood, and were asked to walk to the front of the room. Our group prayed over the students, blessing them, and reminding them that they are loved, they are appreciated, and that they can do amazing things. After the prayer we hugged the students, appreciating their willingness to make the Lord the center of their lives. We ate lunch afterwards, provided by EduCafe. After lunch we went out to play soccer with the students, just having fun and enjoying each other’s company.
After leaving the center we went back to Serve Hope Coffee, where we stocked up on coffee beans for gifts to family and friends, and relaxed. Spending most of our time listening to our driver, and also amazing person, Alberto, talk about his childhood, and the changes that have occurred in Honduras. Through this we were really able to gain a better understanding of life, and the people of Honduras. After relaxing at the coffee shop for about an hour we were back on the road again. Heading to a hotel closer to the airport, and close to a small waterfall.
It took an hour and a half to get to the hotel, on the drive scenery was absolutely breathtaking… mountains, lakes, rivers, the greenery… absolutely awe inspiring. Moments like those are moments where we have to be thankful for all the beauty that the Lord has placed in our world. We drove up, down, and around the mountains to finally arrive at the hotel that we would be staying at. Shortly after arriving, and wasting no time at all, we began our walk to the waterfall. The walk wasn’t long, it was just enough to want to enjoy the nice, cold, flowing water of the waterfall. We spent about an hour (though it felt shorter), at the waterfall, going under the falls, and enjoying the “nice, cold, flowing water”. We made our way back to the hotel, where we had a 10 minute break to get changed and get ready for dinner. Before dinner we were able to take in the breath taking scenery, we spent a good chunk of time taking pictures and enjoying the weather. Dinner was great. It’s hard to go wrong with steak, eggs, and plantains. After dinner we had our group meeting like we do every night. Except this night was slightly different. Instead of talking to one another the entire time, we spent most of the time writing letters to our future selves, describing what we had learned, and what we hope that our future selves can take away from the experience of going on the mission trip to Honduras.
After the meeting I started working on this blog post, while most of the group played cards outside. I would’ve felt bad for missing an opportunity to play cards, but I never got that opportunity because a couple minutes later it started raining very hard. Everyone was able to take shelter safely, and we were able to close up all the windows and doors successfully.
One of the most important things that a person can create in their life are memories. During these last couple of days, we’ve created memories that may well impact the way we look at all the blessings that we have in our everyday lives. We’ve interacted with the people of Honduras, and under the Lord’s guidance and love we were able to create meaningful connections with these people. It’s because of our Savior’s love that we were able to meet all these amazing people, that we were able to make Olga’s dreams come true, that multiple students made the decision to commit their lives to Jesus Christ, that we got to work under such an amazing organization. I’m astounded by all the work that we put in, all the lives that are changed. I never want to forget Olga’s tears of happiness when she saw her completed house. I never want to forget the tears when those students gave their lives to Jesus Christ, I never want to forget the tears when we washed the feet of the EduCafe teachers. I never want to forget the happiness that we brought to the children at Sunday School. I never want to forget the laughter and pure joy of the EduCafe students playing soccer. I never want to forget Honduras.
Anthony “Antonio” Liu