On Thursday we went to Currais Novos. After waking up early from Boi Selado, we went directly over to the school. This was a really big federal high school where we shared with a much larger group of kids. This time it was more of a school assembly. It was a bit different though at this school, because the theme was bullying. We played a lot of songs and it all just happened. Each time is completely different, but we follow the general blue print of talking about why were there and playing music. This time we had an hour and a half, so we had the opportunity to really pour our hearts out. It is funny because as I was talking, i found that i was much more of a bully than I thought. I was much more of a broken and messed up person than I thought. I really was a screw up. And after communicating this, I saw how good God was for taking all that crap out of my life that really just caused pain and straying. It is funny too, because I found the oppression of tradition and being fake- being luke warm- had infected these areas severly. So the challenge for this place turned out to be the same as Boi Selado- being real, and being hot or cold. To be authentic, and live for one thing. Do you like who you are, do you like who your friends want you to be? Do you like going through the motions of what your parents do? Afterward we talked to a teacher and she said something along the lines of, "I don't have God in my heart like you do, but i can see Him in this. I am really touched..." Praise God. One girl even rave us her rosary beads so we would remember all that had happened that day with them. We repeated this one more time for an older group (seniors) then drove over to one of Marconi's friends' houses. There we prepared little "goody" bags for the children of Negros. There we had these amazing chicken and beef empanada's that are hard to describe how good they were. At night we went to the Presbyterian Church and got to play worship and hang out with all of them. After handing out some Gospel tracks, we went to our final destination: the city park. Currais is a fairly large town (30 or 40 thousand) and so there is a lot of night life and its all over the place. At this point we were SO exhausted from minimal sleep and much travel and conversation, that our plan was to sit down and just play- just see what happens. Our plan usually is to just go and see what God wants. It is funny too because we didn't even know where we were sleeping that night either:) This is a pattern too. We just meet people, and divinely- I kid you not, divinely they are hospitable and welcome us in for lunch and dinner and the sort. This happened in Negros too- God provided everything. He was all we needed because we didn't have the security of family to rely on a house and food. IT was Marconi looking at his distant and close network in every place we went. Every meal was provided, every bed, water- perfect. Sometimes is was dirty and bug ridden with no running water and no electricity- but that is how i like it. Bottom line is that we go in with faith, and God gets us home alive, rested, full and more joy and content than we could ever imagine.... Anyway, close to a hundred people (guessing) showed up and were standing around clapping. We had just let go and all this was happening around us. It was not only fitting but relaxing for some reason that we were sitting underneath a gigantic replica of a statue of Jesus in Rio De Janiero. In the middle of this oppressed and tradition-locked community- there was a statue of Jesus with His arms open- and welcoming everyone who could see Him to come to His feet and listen and see what He was doing through us and around us. Once this time finished,
Marconi shared about God and left us to the dirty work: socializing while he got to clean up. Its funny how cleaning up suddenly has become such an easy job:) So we filter our way through and made some friends. Marconi received an invite to stay at another church leader's house... so off we went. Us three crammed in this small room and woke up the next morning refreshed to go to Negros. And by the way, this place we stayed at this time owned a store too! This was a mini-grocery store with owners who were eager to provide for our needs. So much to their enjoyment and not as much to mine, i took their offer of a popsicle. Turns out that flavor was peanut. And I kid you not- it really was a peanut popsicle. It was probably mostly chunky when they made it, but after the mixing it, it was in this indescribably gross form of half chunky half smooth. A type of peanut butter I now hope they never produce. So this frozen... popsicle if you dare call it... wasn't the coffee or chocolate flavor I had hoped for in my exhaustion. This happens everywhere though- in Boi Selado... our hostess Fatima was oh so kind and hospitable. No joke, it was really nice to have... but the yogurt was not what I thought either. True, real, raw spoiled and solidified milk. I need say nothing more. How about the "farofa." This is a really good flour mixed with all kinds of seasonings to put on your food. But in the country- it is flour. I made that mistake as well. And just to add, one of the girls from the school in Currais emailed us (we passed out Gospel tracks with our email and blog and info on it) and asked us more of what we were about and about her life. Good stuff... well anyway, back to Negros.