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Panama 2017 - Day 4

Can you see the absolute joy on her face? That is what much of today was about in Playa Chiquita.  Of course, there was a lot of work to do in the church and work we did!  Electrical, welding, cement work, painting....the list goes on!  We had a little boy, Jorge, from the village that was with us most of the day, wanting to help with anything we would allow.  Jim told him that for all his hard work, he would buy him a coke from the village store at the end of day.  The Village store is a small hut that someone from the village runs with a little window that you can approach to buy candy, water, pop and other small items.  When Jim and Jorge arrived at the window and ordered a coke, they received a stern look directed at Jorge, some serious Spanish from the woman who ran it and a juice was given instead.  You can't help but wonder if Jorge's mom runs the village store?  Jorge still seemed grateful for the juice!    While the work continued at the church, many of us joined the kids in the school yard for day two of vacation Bible school.  In addition to the lively music and fun, we also handed out the hygiene kits that were collected at The Naz and the dolls that were made by our knitting group.      There has to be a better way to describe it than, "vacation Bible school".  There is something quite different about this experience, in this environment. These kids are sweet, kind, loving......the list goes on!  Its the "in-the-midst-of" part that brings tears to my eyes.  As I sat under a tree with four adorable little girls sitting around me giggling, watching me intently while we made little bracelets, sneaking a bag of pop rocks out for all of us to share.............  I can see, off in the distance, the dump from where their families came from and all around me is the simple way they live now.  And they are joyful. completely joyful and content! This joy extends from the infants to the elderly and these are the moments that both wreck me and ground me yet again. 

"The LORD has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy."
                                                                                          Psa. 126:3

Linda

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