Friday, April 17, 2009

Next Week's Adventure!

One week from today I will be in Bacolod, Philippines. Actually I will be spending the first night in Manila on our way to Bacolod! Yay, I can add another exotic place to my "never thought it could happen to me" travel stories! It feels surreal to be able to be in these wonderfully different cultures all around the world. I did not grow up in a traveling family. We had money for camping vacations here in California & that was it. I did not go to Hawaii until the money for it was left to us in a friend's will after I was married.

So today I am gathering the things I will need: very light but modest shirts & pants, flip-flops & one pair of covered shoes for the slum areas we will be in. A bottle of bug repellent with Deet. Hand sanitizer, lots of little pacs of kleenex because most bathrooms do not provide toilet paper & if they do it is old newspapers etc. Umm no thanks! I'll buy water as soon as we get there because we cannot drink one drop of their water even for brushing teeth. Cannot order ice in restaurants for the same reason. No coats is needed just something light for the airplane which we will be in for about 16 hours! Blow-up neck pillow is good for the flight also.

The weather is EXTREMELY hot & humid. It sorta feels like a bathroom with the hot shower on, constantly! Thus, no make-up because it just melts off before you even get out to the street from your room. Lot's of headbands & barrettes for the hair. I am trying to get myself psyched up for this part of the trip. I am an over 50 woman who will be traveling with 25 young twenty-somethings who look totally adorable without make-up or hair products! Even the confession that this is an issue with me is embarrassing because, after all,I am going a trillion miles away from home to do God-stuff for people ya know? ..........Uh-oh I feel a major load of "should" headed my way!! Ha! For instance:
*I really shouldn't care what I LOOK like while in a country to help others.
*I shouldn't want to look good in the millions of pics that will be posted on
Face Book by our students!
*I should get over the fact that no product on earth is strong enough to
keep my hair from being plastered flat to my skull due to the

OK, I am over my "shoulding" on myself for now. Oh yeah, must add head scarfs to the list, that may help. Anyway back to where I began this post. As a couple, we still cannot afford to do these trips but we are extremely blessed & fortunate to be the leaders of a school that goes on yearly mission trips & the large amount of airline tickets that are purchased come with a dividend of two free tickets, so we are always allowed to go for free! Amazing huh? Told you I was blessed! And I know, a blessed person like this certainly shouldn't be complaining about a silly thing like make-up & hair! I know!

Hubs & I & two other leaders will be overseeing all the activities on this trip, and it's a busy one. We like to keep the students pretty busy with just enough down time to relax a bit before the next adventure. On this trip to Bacolod we will be leading the local church Sunday service, then praying for the pastors of the community one by one. We will also be doing a huge Youth Night at the end of the week. Some of our other activities will be taking food & toys into the slum neighborhoods outside of town. We are bringing in art supplies to do face-painting, chalk drawing etc. to entertain the kids while others go shack to shack offering to pray for people. We always see a lot of physical healings on these trips. The locals begin to bring people to us once they see a friend get healed right before their eyes! It's pretty awesome, & I use that word in it's correct meaning!

The students will be painting a church & clearing a lot for a new building of some kind. They will also go to the local shopping centers & pray for people. We have a cultural exchange day planned where the students will be assigned to different homes to spend the day & help prepare the evening meal! Some of our technically gifted guys will be in a recording studio helping the local musicians record their original music! We try to do this every where we go because it is so frustrating to go to another country & hear them singing American worship songs instead of their own native creations. They often have been taught by well-meaning American missionaries that their own native instruments are evil & belong to the past, but we believe that all instruments can be used in a beautiful & pure way, even the drums that their ancestors used to call up the devil etc. It is a lovely thing to hear them create wonderful music in their own language & indigenous instruments for the first time! I've seen it happen in China, Fiji & the Philippines so far! Wow, I have an amazing life when I stop & describe it! Crazy!

Last year a couple of the ladies who went began to quietly take a few of the little street kids to the local McDonald's each morning for breakfast. They also bought some salve for their leg sores. By the end of the week they were feeding about 30 kids! The poverty is overwhelming. Two of our former students now live there & have created a foundation that is providing college scholarships for the young people. They also have formed a company that is teaching the slum families how to run a small business using the skills they already have, that will pull them out of their life-style. I am so proud of these students & the huge difference they are making in our world. Talk about Validation!

There is a truly gross Internet cafe right in the same building as our hotel so I will be posting stuff on our school site & may even make it over to here once or twice. Last year I sat there in my flip-flops typing away & a sweet lady came over to me with a dust pan & reached down right next to my foot & scooped up a huge cockroach, at least 4 inches long! Yah, not lying! Covered shoes in the Internet cafe, note to self! Ha! So off I go on another adventure, this safe, quiet & sheltered 54 year old is on the move again!


  1. Wow...will be praying as He leads. What a privilege to be able to pray with the Pastors of the community.

  2. Spread those beautiful wings and fly, Miss Butterfly. Makeup or not, you are gorgeous. Even though I've never met you, I can see that.


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