Today was the epitome of fun! The team spent the entire day with 49 children from Imagine Ministry. An hour and a half bus ride with crazy fun Nica kids brought us to “Ruby Ranch.” Many of our team members referred to Ruby Ranch as a Nicaraguan Disney Land. We truly had something for everyone. We played sports like soccer, baseball, and volleyball. We took kids on horseback rides. We jumped on trampolines and wrestled until we nearly passed out from laughter. They even had a giant swing and an even bigger slip and slide that would put any waterpark to shame! What a blessing it was to see the joy on their faces as they played like any other child. The excitement and delight that they displayed was so infectious that everyone joined in!
It was evident that these children have completely captured the hearts of all of us. Kendrick Stiles stated, “it was just amazing to see kids who have next to nothing laugh and play as though they were the happiest children in the world.” God was continuously breaking the language barrier by providing opportunities to smile and laugh with these amazing kids. Although most of the group speaks little to no Spanish, the relationships that formed with these children will “hopefully continue despite the distance,” as stated by Joe Dickerson.
It’s amazing to see God working in the lives of each of our team members. By coming here and serving and seeing how our Nicaraguan friends display true joy, it is clear that there has been such a growth in each team member. After 5 days together these Lauren family members from all over the US and Canada have become a true family. The conversations, laughs, and even tears have formed life long bonds between people who would maybe have never met unless they came. In my humble opinion, there may not be a better way to connect to another person than working alongside of them to serve others for the glory of God!