Thursday, July 21, 2011

Not a problem, but an opportunity

The past two days have been beyond the normal. On Wednesday, we had classes again, but then went a lot smoother because we set them up differently. Instead of it being a free for all for anyone to come to either class, we split the classes up into a younger group and an older group. The first class we had was the younger group and there were about 18 kids so it was perfect to have two per computer. They were younger kids so they were still very energetic, but since we controlled the number of kids that came, they seemed to behave a lot better. Our second class, the older group, also had about 18 kids. They were very well behaved as well and we were able to move a little faster in the curriculum with them since they were older. During chapel that day, it was really cool to see that the kids were remembering what we had talked about previous days and were even asking questions about what was being said. It was definitely evident that God was in our presence and He was working on those kids' hearts.

After classes, we went back to the church in Câmpina and attended a bible study. After bible study, we decided to walk back to the house from the church because it wasn't that far. As we started walking, we realized there were very large dark clouds that were rolling in. Thankfully, we made it back just in time. We were just about to sit outside and eat dinner when the rain started coming down full force and blowing everywhere. Then the electricity went out and that caused some problems. So we quickly found some flashlights and candles and went inside the house and ate a candle lit dinner.

Today, we woke up to no electricity, still, but thankfully the storm was completely over. It was actually really nice because the storm cooled everything and it was a very beautiful day. The night before, we got a call from Brother John saying that his house and the church were pretty badly damaged by the storm. Apparently, a tornado went through parts of Sat Minier, ripping roofs completely off, tearing down power lines, and destroying trees. So we went to Sat Minier a little early today to see what we could do to help. When we got there, it was a lot worse than we had expected. The church had several broken windows, the door was broken, the roofing had come off, and the electricity everywhere in the village wasn't working. What may have been even worse was that the school that we were using to teach at this week no longer had a roof either. In fact, the school's roof had flown all over Sat Minier. So we started at the church and swept all of the class and dirt out of the inside of the church and removed some of the carpets that were soaked from the rain coming through the broken windows. We also cleaned up a lot of glass outside of the church. Brother John's giant apple tree had broken in half so we also helped him rake the leaves out of his yard and pick up a ton of apples that didn't survive the storm. With so many people helping, we that didn't take us very long so we went to the school to see how we could help. Since there was no roof on the school anymore, almost every room on the second floor was soaked so we had to move a lot of desks out to the halls so we could remove the carpets and let them dry elsewhere. The director was very thankful that we helped them and even took a picture of all of us. She said that not many people from the village were willing to help restore that school after the storm, but we helped, so she wanted to document it to show other people that we were willing to help and we don't even live there. Through the horrible storm, God opened an opportunity for us to be able to testify to the director of the school and thank her for letting us use the school for our classes.

After we finished helping at the school, we couldn't have our morning class because there was no electricity, but the electricity actually came on later in the morning so we planned to have our afternoon class. We had a little time before lunch, so we walked around the village a little bit to see if there was anybody else we could help. Alissa, Christina, and I helped an older crippled man sweep up all of the cherries and grapes that had fallen all over his front yard. He could barely walk so it would have taken him a very long time to do, so he was very thankful that we helped him. The boys found a man that had cut up a huge tree that had fallen from the storm and helped him carry all of it to a pile in his yard to use as fire wood later. The man said it would have taken him several hours to carry all that wood, so five more guys helping made it go a lot faster. It was a huge blessing to our team to be able to use the disaster the storm made to testify to other people in the village.

After lunch, we had out afternoon class and it went very smoothly. Not all of the kids showed up because they were probably still helping clean up after the storm, but those that did show up were very well behaved and we got through a lot of material. Tomorrow is our last day so we will have a ceremony for the kids.

There is a lot to be praying for as we are finishing up our time here in Romania:
-The people in the village of Sat Minier and all the other villages that got badly hit by the storm. The smaller villages usually don't get help in these kinds of situations very fast because help focuses on the bigger villages, so just pray that they could fix what they can and help each other our until more help arrives.
-The children we have been teaching. Tomorrow is our last day to present the Gospel clearly to these children, so just pray that God would soften their hearts and that they would be willing to listen to what we have to say.
-The team, as we are preparing everything to leave Romania. We have to make sure we tie up any lasts knots concerning leaving the computers here and pack everything up again. So please just pray that we would use the little time we have left wisely, spending time with friends and making sure we leave with everything in order.

Thank you for all of your prayers!

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