Ecuador 2018

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I wanted to give you a brief recap of our trip rather than just sporadic pictures and brief captions. This is a long post, but I hope you take the time to read it. ❤

Our flight was delayed the Friday night we left, and we arrived late that night (actually well past midnight) into Quito and stayed in a hotel. The next morning, we began our road trip to the jungle camp with a stop at the Papallacta Hot Springs to enjoy the hot water yet chilly air. After some time in the springs and lunch, we headed to the jungle camp, Campamento Bautista UNPES. We settled into our humble abodes, and the interns (Americans) attempted (since they were in Spanish) to teach us the songs we would be singing for the week. That night, it rained for hours and caused some local flooding, and the waters of the Napo River behind the camp surged down stream with full force.

Sunday we had the pleasure of worshiping at Iglesia Cristiana Bautista Cristo El Unico Camino as the rains continued to fall, landing rhythmically on the metal roof. Later that day, the 260+ kids arrived at the jungle camp. We had our first evening of dinner and worship together. One of our jobs as the ministry team was to wash dishes…by hand…for 300+ people. I loved watching our kids (and I mean the Terry kids plus the other kids from our church) jump right in, wash, dry, and put away all those dishes. They served whole-hardheartedly without complaint. And there would always be several Ecuadorian kids that would jump in after the meals and help out too.

The kids were at camp Sunday afternoon until Wednesday after lunch. Our days consisted of worship times, recreation, swimming and free time and our meals together. Monday’s rec time was a muddy mess. Joel and I had the opportunity to do some inner tube tug-of-war, and I must confess that was the only time I fully stood under the COLD shower head! That night after worship, we had the comical experience of making 300 s’mores for the campers. Thankfully there were 34 of us and a handful of interns to help…I was the marshmallow puller-offer, and my hands were a sticky mess!

Tuesday morning, Anna woke up and didn’t feel well. After two vomiting incidents, some essential oils, activated charcoal, a few hours of sleep, and lots of prayer, she was completely better. Praise the Lord!  That evening was the talent show, and the girls and I, along with one of their best friends, were scheduled to perform a worship piece to “So Will I” (en espanol 😊). Anna was determined to do it, and we were able to dance. It was the first time I was able to perform alongside my girls in a dance choreographed just for His glory. The practices we had at home and the performance are times I will always cherish in my heart.

As camp drew to a close on Wednesday morning, Byron, one of the leaders there in the ministry, shared the Gospel with the kids. While it was spoken in Spanish, the message is still the same…Jesus is the only one who can rescue us from our sins, and we need the forgiveness offered through his sacrifice on the cross in order to have restored fellowship with God the Father. 34 precious kids gave their hearts and lives to Jesus. I had the privilege of holding tight to a young girl named Gabriela. She is forever in my prayers. These 260+ kids were from 22 jungle villages. May these kids go back and shine bright for Jesus! There is an awesome team set up to make sure these kids are discipled and connected with a local church. Ecuadorian kids have joy and energy beyond what we see here in the States. They have grateful hearts and a love for family that is to be admired.

That afternoon, after the kids left, we began our cultural experiences. We were able to see and feed some monkeys, take a boat ride up the Napo River and stop at a local village area where we were taught about their native plants and their medicinal uses, and see some of their traditional tools and methodology. Then we had the opportunity to take a 45 min hike up to see one of the local waterfalls. It wasn’t an easy hike, so about 2/3 of our group went. My girls had to stay behind because Anna hadn’t eaten anything the day before and still felt weak. And Aleyah somehow bruised the underside of her foot on the bunk’s metal ladder…craziness! But Scott and Joel and I took advantage of this opportunity. Wow! What a hike but what an exhilarating reward to jump into the falls once we got there! God’s creation- I love it!!!

That night, we went into Tena. It is interesting to see this city at night.  One of the things I learned on this trip is to make sure you experience and learn about the culture. I am by no means well-versed in Ecuadorian culture, but I have more of an understanding than what I started with.

Thursday we began our drive to Camp Chacauco in the mountains. We stopped at the Nate Saint house and stood in the same kitchen where the 5 wives of the Ecuadorian missionaries stood when they received the news that their husbands had been killed by the Waodani tribe. Now the home is a place where you can purchase goods made by local tribes, including the Waodani… God’s grace and forgiveness on display! From there, we went to El Diablo waterfall. This was another hike (shorter and not as difficult and a man-made trail) to an amazingly powerful waterfall. After our hike, we headed to the mountain camp and were greeted by Steve and Carol Thompson, the missionaries who began the work in the jungle and mountains about 30 years ago. His recounts of God’s provision and protection are a reminder of how great our God is!

Friday was another outside adventure. If you know me, you know I love being outside and being active, so these excursions were tight up my alley. We stopped at the local zip lining place and zipped over the rushing waters hundreds of feet below. Wow! So amazing to be able to do that! That evening, we headed further up the mountain (think giant bus on small, winding mountain roads…just a bit scary!) and ministered to about 20 kids from a small village. The two hours we spent there, along with my early morning quiet times in the jungle camp, were probably the most touching times for me. These people had very little, but had hearts ready to serve and ready to love. The pastor there finished the evening saying, “My hands are empty, but my God is big!” The Spirit pricked my heart and those words will forever resound in my mind. We were able to bless the kids there with new shoes donated by one of our members. Not one child complained about the color or style of the shoe. A few didn’t even get a pair because we ran out of those certain sizes. They will get shoes – their names and sizes were taken so they could be delivered later. But even the ones who didn’t have shoes in their hands never complained. They each were completely joyful to have shoes or know that some are coming. It’s been difficult to come back to the US and see the selfishness that we have, the sense of entitlement, and the discontent. Less is indeed more, and I’m praying I won’t forget that truth.

We spent one last night at the mountain camp, with its beautiful sights, sounds and smells. Saturday morning was our good-bye time. We left Patate and headed to Quito with some stops along the way. We had lunch at the historical Hacienda La Cienega and then headed to the equator. We spent some time there being touristy and then headed to the airport to catch our midnight flight that was delayed an hour. Despite tiredness, we continued to enjoy each other’s company and were happy to eventually arrive home safely. The 30+ hours of being awake (who can actually sleep on a plane?!) definitely deserved a Sunday afternoon nap and a couple more days of recovery. But it was SOOOOOO worth it. The eternal destination was changed for 34 souls, and those who went to minister also had hearts that changed. Thank you for your prayers! God is good and God is BIG! So now I’m asking Him, “What’s next? Bring it on Lord!”

 

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Staying Cool with God

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My soul will be satisfied as with fat and rich food, and my mouth will praise you with joyful lips, when I remember you upon my bed, and meditate on you in the watches of the night; for you have been my help, and in the shadow of your wings I will sing for joy.

My soul clings to you; your right hand upholds me. Psalm 63:5-8

I LOVE this podcast from Revelation Wellness and Alisa Keaton. She talks about how certain foods inflame our bodies and how we need to cool our bodies with the right, anti-inflammatory foods. But, more importantly, we need to remember that it is the Lord that spiritually keeps us cool and fills the void, heals the hurt that we try to fill with food, or relationships, or approval from others, or whatever we tend to lean on for comfort and assurance.

Please take an hour and listen to this to encourage you in both your spiritual and physical journey. I would love to hear back form you on what you gleaned from this podcast!

 

7 Days of Fulfillment ~ Day 5

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Day 5 Prophecy:

Psalm 22 is an incredible foretelling of Jesus’ death. King David was granted, by God, an insight into what was to come for the One that was promised to the people of Israel. The Jewish people were hoping for the Messiah to come and save them from Roman oppression, but Jesus came to suffer so He could save us from the oppression of sin and death. It’s Friday, but Sunday’s coming! 

My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?
    Why are you so far from saving me, from the words of my groaning?

Psalm 22:1

Fulfilled: 

“And about the ninth hour, Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, ‘Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?’ That is, ‘My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?’ ” Matt. 27:46

7 Days of Fulfillment ~ Day 4

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Day 4 Prophecy:

Just as we will experience in our own lives, Jesus was abandoned – even by those who loved Him.

‘Awake, O sword, against My Shepherd, and against the Man who is My companion,’ says the LORD of hosts. ‘Strike the Shepherd [Jesus], and the sheep shall be scattered’

Zech. 13:7

Fulfilled: 

“Then they all forsook Him and fled” Mark 14:50

7 Days of Fulfillment ~ Day 3

images (19)Day 3 Prophecy:

Jesus was betrayed by one of the disciples, Judas. This was a man Jesus chose at the beginning of His ministry, knowing that the end would result in a sellout for 30 pieces of silver. Jesus’ heart is one that is filled with compassion. He longs to see His children repent and run into His arms. So come to the foot of the cross for forgiveness, grace, and mercy.

 Then I said to them, “If it seems good to you, give me my wages; but if not, keep them.” And they weighed out as my wages thirty pieces of silver. Then the Lord said to me, “Throw it to the potter”—the lordly price at which I was priced by them. So I took the thirty pieces of silver and threw them into the house of the Lord, to the potter.

Zech. 11:12-13

 

Fulfilled:

And throwing down the pieces of silver into the temple, he departed, and he went and hanged himself. But the chief priests, taking the pieces of silver, said, “It is not lawful to put them into the treasury, since it is blood money.” So they took counsel and bought with them the potter’s field as a burial place for strangers. Mathhew 27:5-7

Happy New Year!

May your 2015 be filled with opportunities to be transformed in many marvelous ways! /home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/b8b/19248628/files/2014/12/img_0845.jpg

Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God. Hebrews 12:1-2

Our Travels, Our Food, Our Mission

I spend a lot of time in the kitchen prepping, cooking, and baking. This ensures that my family is being well-fed AND that we are saving money. My reward for all this work is knowing that when we go out to eat, we can do it well. It doesn’t have to be expensive, but it does have to be fresh and real. So, on our 2 day excursion to Asheville, we took advantage of our time there. We love to eat, and the following pictures show it.Our favorite spot to visit is Sunny Point Cafe. They specialize in breakfast, but have some great main dishes too. They also grow a number of their veggies in the garden that sits alongside of the cafe (that’s where my “bee on the flower” photo was shot). Scott loves their carrot pancakes (that I did a “remake” of at home), and I love their Ahi tuna burger and their bean and veggie burger. And their local grits with local goat cheese also tops my list.
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Ahi Tuna Burger from Sunny Point Cafe
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Shrimp Ceviche from Tupelo Honey Cafe
We also headed to Tupelo Honey Cafe where I ordered shrimp ceviche – excellent flavor and very filling. On our last night there, we tried a new spot for us – Carmel’s. The salad I ordered was loaded with fresh berries, almonds, and goat cheese (there are a lot of goat farms around which is fine with me!). We all know how easy it is to overcook a chicken breast, but this one was super moist. I ate every bite of the entire salad 🙂 After our 6 mile hike, we went to Neo Burrito and I ordered the Spinach Cotija Burrito – rice, black beans, mushrooms, spinach, pesto, cotija cheese, and salsa. Did I mention a salsa bar for all your salsa needs? 20140918-184842.jpg
The Berry Salad with Blackened Chicken from Carmel’s – blueberries, strawberries, and raspberries galore!
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Spinach Cotija Burrito from Neo Burrito
Our final destination was Spartanburg for the RecSpo Conference. This event took place in the new Star Center which hosts Upwards Sports. What an awesome facility! The purpose of Upwards is to teach students the skills and sportsmanship of various sports while teaching them about the love of Jesus. And that is in part why we were there. While this began as a trip to earn credit for Scott’s seminary degree, it soon became an event we looked forward to attending since fitness and sports are highly valued by us. And even more importantly, we knew we would be learning how to reach people for Jesus through sports. Our hearts were blessed, contacts made, and prayers begun as we seek to see what God is calling us to do through the recreational activities we are involved in. While I know God has something specific He is calling me to do, and I am seeking Him on this, the one thing He did reveal to me while I was there is that I must be intentional about sharing Jesus with others where He currently has me – schools, ballet, football, grocery stores, and with friends and family. Please pray for me as I head forward with this truth and with whatever it is God is directly calling me to do. I am humbled and excited to see what’s in store for me (and my family)!20140918-184904.jpg
The BRAND NEW Star Center for Upwards Sports

 

The Best Things in Life Are Free Part 2 of 2

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From the veggie/flower garden of our favorite Asheville restaurant- Sunny Point Cafe

Yes, the best thing in life are free. My husband and I had the opportunity to get away for the week. We spent a couple of days in Asheville and then headed over to Spartanburg for the RecSpo Conference in the new Upwards Facility. This was part of his seminary degree, and I had the chance to attend as well. For two people that have a heart for fitness/sports and ministry, this was SWEET! Now to reflect and hear what God is leading us to do…

While on our trip we were able to take a hike through Graveyard Fields outside of Asheville. We were supposed to do a 3 mile hike, but we missed a turn and doubled it- oops! That’s okay because it made our post-hike burritos taste that much better. The sights, smells, cooler air, and heart-pumping walk were free…and wonderful!

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The beginning of our hike of Graveyard Fields

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From the top of Graveyard Fields

At our conference, legendary FSU coach Bobby Bowden gave a great talk to all the attendees. I plopped myself outside the upper room where I knew he was and waited patiently for him to emerge. I asked for a photo because “I’m an FSU alumni” I told him, and he gave me a GREAT, BIG squeeze. (I think that’s a  smile on my face!) Yes that was free too – and a memory I will hold onto forever!20140918-184603.jpg

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The BRAND NEW Upwards fields where Scott was playing ultimate Frisbee

Then there is this photo of the soccer field. Scott was able to get out on a gorgeous afternoon and play some ultimate Frisbee while I was jiving with the ReFit Revolution ladies. There is something incredibly refreshing when you can move and feel alive! Yep. That’s free too.

The Best Thing in life is Jesus. He’s free. And the other best things in life – family, friends, creation, and simply enjoying life- are free too, so celebrate all things free this weekend!

The Best Things in Life Are Free Part 1 of 2

I’ve been a bit quiet here on my blog recently. This is because my time has been spent elsewhere- namely on my mom. My stepdad’s health has been poor, but about a month ago it began to deteriorate quite rapidly. And one and a half weeks ago, it plummeted to the point that even the doctor was surprised by his decent and hospice was called in. Then, just several days after hospice came on the scene, my stepdad peacefully left this earth. My mom has been amazing through it all. And she would be the first to tell you that it isn’t through her strength, but only because God’s strength is being made perfect through her weakness.

We were out to dinner the other night, and our waiter was telling the tourists next to us that the best things are free. He was referring to taking advantage of the nature that the area has to offer as opposed to spending money on other activities. That phrase – “the best things are free”- struck a cord with me because The Best Thing in life is free! I would be remiss if I didn’t take the opportunity to tell you of “That Thing”. We all have a void in our hearts that we seek to fill with countless “things” – money, people, fanfare, prestige, etc. But that void was created by a God who wonderfully created us, and it can only be filled with Him. But our sin seals our hearts and keeps Him out. It is only by God’s sacrifice of His son, Jesus, that that sin can be melted away and our fellowship with our Creator can be restored. Jesus is our gift from God – free and without strings. Yes. Free. We simply extend our hands of surrender to God, and He gives us forgiveness through Jesus. Then we have an amazing well spring of life that allows an unimaginable love and joy to flow out of our hearts and into the lives of others, bringing glory to God. I pray that you know Jesus and, if you don’t, please ask me Him because I want you to be with me in Heaven for eternity!

For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23

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A Healthy Body by Aleyah

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Here is a post by Aleyah, my 9 yr old daughter. These are her tips for living the healthy lifestyle both physically and spiritually. 🙂

Health

Aleyah D. Terry

Psalm 84:1  

How lovely is your dwelling place, O LORD Almighty!!

God does not want your dwelling place (your body) unclean, so why not keep it clean?!

  • Drink 7-8 glasses of water

  • Get 8-9 hours of sleep

  • Do 1 hour of exercise or more

  • Eat right

For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come. 

~1 Timothy 4:8

Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well.

~3 John 1:2