Normally, Thursday and Friday are both “vacation days” on Mission Jamaica. These are really important days. It gives the team a chance to rest and recover from their week of work…especially critical because we’re not used to the heat and climate of Jamaica. It also gives us a chance to think and process what we’ve experienced up at Westhaven, and at the J’abode building site. It can be pretty emotional.
That’s in a normal year.
This year wasn’t normal, because of all the rain we had on the work site. Typically, the J’abode home is completed on Wednesday, but much of yesterday was a ‘wash out.’ So today we took 15 volunteers back up the mountain to the J’abode site to finish what we started.
It had rained most of the night and was still raining when we arrived. So we made the 15 minute drive back over to Westhaven to find dry shelter and to play with the kids there. After about a half hour, it looked like the rain was lifting, and so we went back to the build site and got to work.
It was a fast-paced day. We finished the roof, the trim work and then started to pour concrete. The whole process took about 4 hours. After four hours, the home for Luverne and her daughter was complete.
We gathered around Luverne and her home, and did a house blessing, which included Psalm 84:
“How lovely is your dwelling place,
O Lord of hosts!
My soul longs, indeed it faints
for the courts of the Lord;
my heart and my flesh sing for joy
to the living God.
Even the sparrow finds a home,
and the swallow a nest for herself,
where she may lay her young,
at your altars, O Lord of hosts,
my King and my God.
Happy are those who live in your house,
ever singing your praise…”
This is also the psalm that will be a big part of our Trinity100 Celebration Worship on April 28th.
Handing over the keys to the home, gathering around Luverne and laying hands on her shoulders and and on the home and praying was a deep and meaningful experience for all of us there.
We drove back and joined the rest of the team at the hotel. The afternoon was spent hanging out and enjoying the sun and the water. We met for devotions at 6pm.
After devos, a group of the Trinity folks loaded up one of the buses and went to the “Luminescent Lagoon,” one of 4 places in the world where a combination of brackish water and micro-organisms cause bioluminescence when the water is disturbed.
Translation: When you swim, the water around you glows. It is very cool to see. We first ate at a small, local restaurant (the type where Jamaicans eat…not a tourist trap) and then took a boat ride into the lagoon and swim in the “glistening waters.” We then returned to the hotel to join the rest of the team, who is all down in the lobby playing games together.
It was a very full day; a day full of meaning and joy.
Tomorrow is pretty loose. We’re looking forward to some unstructured time.
Please continue to keep us in your prayers. At the same time, please remember Luverne, the new homeowner. Pray that her new home is one of love and of joy.