Yesterday was our day off, which was of course a lot of fun, but also sad because it means that the week is almost over! We got an early start in the morning and headed to a boardwalk to catch a boat that would take us to the island our beach was on. The boat was a little crowded and the water a little choppy, but we made it.
When we got to the beach, we settled into our island paradise by jumping in the water, which was surprisingly warm. Afterwards, some of the boys got a game of football going while the rest of us tried to crack and eat coconuts! Later, we continued on to the market where our cook Cliseria is a vendor and explored the maze of shops. Some of the group who had not been on this trip before continued on to see the cliff divers and the rest of us stayed behind to hang out with the kids.
Although hanging out with my fellow trip members and getting to know them is awesome, the most exciting thing for me is the immersion into the lifestyle at Casa Hogar. As the trip progresses, I continually see and experience the relationships that have turned from mud huts to skyscrapers in front of me.
It is hard to ignore the love in the eyes of every child and even in the eyes of the trip members when they play, sit, or try to communicate with each other. I think about how slowly I learn to trust people normally and how meeting new people is not always a success and then I think about these kids who give us their all in one moment and love us despite all the faults someone else would see.
Why can’t we all be as innocently loving as these children? Did Christ not call us to do that? This trip is teaching me the meaning of loving our neighbors, despite our differences and the walls we have built up against them. For that, I only have the children to thank, who could teach me that with no words and just one smile.