Change your plans!


We arrive Sunday 9:30am at Cachisagua. We have prepared a couple of days for our meetings: 9am - 11am planning for the VBS program two weeks away; 11am - 1pm scheduled monthly meeting for the FLET bible study. As soon as we arrived the pastor, Ruben, tells us, “We can’t have the meetings. First of all, a member of the community passed away this morning at 5am and we have to help with the funeral. Plus, two church members are celebrating their high school graduations, at different homes!”


How would you react? If I had just arrived from the US, I would have flipped. But after working in the community for many years now, my reaction was, “Fine. What do you want us to do?” Mentally, I cancelled all our plans, and joined in the action. First we visited the home of Mayra, one of the high school graduates, and helped set up chairs and install the sound system. Beside the house, some women were cooking up lunch.


After about half an hour, the program started. A pastor from somewhere moderated with a natural, casual manner. First an opening prayer, and then some singing. He had a great voice. Rare in these parts. Of course, the international speaker, (Ha!), me, gets asked to give the message. Since we had attended another graduation in Capulispungo a week before, I just gave the same message.


The second half of the program contained words from the family, friends, pastor, plus special music from anyone who wanted to participate. Then folks formed a line to congratulate Mayra. In this culture, when you “congratulate” someone, it is with a gift or some money. Finally, the graduate shared her thoughts and thanks. We held a special prayer for her, and ended around 12:30pm. Abundant food followed as usual and always in these events.


At 1:00 we left for another house, where Luis was celebrating his graduation. They had already finished the program and were handing out the food. I wasn't very excited about repeating lunch, but many of the others, who had attended Mayra’s celebration, were already there enjoying a second lunch.


After all, we did hold our planning program at 2:30pm in the church. (The FLET meeting was obviously postponed for another date.) We are helping them learn how to plan and execute a program for children, which included singing, games, puppets, and drama. The VBS date is in two weeks. We’ll see how they do, but what’s important is how they are eager to learn.


I’m learning to be flexible, and not get bent out of shape when things don’t happen as planned. Trust God, and let Him do His work in His time.

(We left for home at 5pm. They still were planning to attend the funeral that night. Wow!)