Today I met our new team that will be serving with us until August 16th. It is great to have a team here for almost 2 weeks instead of just one week. This team is from San Diego, California. They are from a church called “The Rock” and the team is from a discipleship training mission school which is branched off from their church. There are 24 people on this team which includes the leaders.
It was so great to meet everyone on this team. Everyone has such incredible hearts and I can tell that they are very excited to be here to serve! In the morning we all went to one of the markets in the city to do a scavenger hunt. I don’t think a team has done this “missions’ immersion scavenger hunt” before or at least not since I have joined the staff here with Pathway to Joy Ministries.
We split up into different groups to do this. The staff and interns went with the different
groups however we were not allowed to help but just to be with the group to make sure they were okay. I have to admit for me it was hard not to help because I am so used to helping when teams come here! I thought the scavenger hunt was such a great idea for the team to do because it got them right into the culture and the language. They had to learn some Romanian, learn how to use the public transportation, exchange money, talk to Romanians to find out what the needs are here, etc. I think it gives the team a great experience to start their ministry time here in Romania.
Afterwards we went to a park in the centre of the city to eat our lunch and talk about what the team learned from their experience from the scavenger hunt. Then we went to the “House of Joy” where the team learned more about the ministry’s vision to bring in a group of orphan children to live there and raise them in a loving environment. Then we all pulled weeds to clear the yard at the house. I was amazed how quickly we were all able to clear that yard from those weeds that covered the backyard!
I had a great day with the team but unfortunately my day ended with a shocking disappointment when I heard from the team co-ordinator that I was not welcome back to be with them tomorrow. At first I could not understand why because I really enjoyed my time with them but then my brain clicked why which was probably because I shared an opinion with some people about something. I think I did it in wrong way and also in the wrong context too.
I felt horrible when I realized the mistake that I did today but unfortunately it was too late to do anything about it. The rest of the day I felt so bad that I did not express myself in the right way. Maybe sometimes I just don’t know how to properly do that and I really need God’s guidance how to use better wisdom in this area. I spent a lot of time crying and praying in the evening.
I posted this statement on my facebook page because I felt frustrated with myself: “Sometimes I wonder why God has called me to be on the mission field when I stumble so much and make mistakes that I could have avoided. Oh, I feel so frustrated with myself right now!”
I received three responses that I thought were very encouraging to me and I’d like to write it on here:
From my friend Anna:
“Hold your head up, mistakes are life lessons. Hugs.”
From my friend Heather (she was my supervisor when I was in Russia for my missionary training 2 ½ month placement in 2002):
“Andrea, of all the short-termers we’ve had come and go throughout the years, you will always be a shining example of faithfulness and perseverance. It was probably harder for you than the others we’ve had here. But you were by far the most humble and the most teachable. That impressed me more than anything. It is not how strong or perfect we are. It is admitting our weaknesses and failures and trying to grow from them, which is exactly what you did. God is with you my dear.”
From Jim (he is one of my supporters):
“Who else would God call? You’re the right person? No, one is better for that spot where you’re serving. We’re all fallible.”
Those words from my friends encouraged my spirit and I am so grateful for them posting those kind words to me today. Even though I received encouraging words on my facebook page my spirit still felt down all evening. I was able to talk to my aunt Sharon on the phone in the evening for almost 25 minutes. She encouraged me and prayed too. It was good to talk to her.
In the evening I also posted a new album on my facebook page of the spaghetti lunch fundraiser that I did at my home church before I returned to Romania. I think tomorrow I would really like to spend some quality time with God and also fast and pray too. I would like to ask for your prayers as I go before God tomorrow and ask Him to speak to my heart. Thanks.