(Saturday) Emancipation Day

We have been in Jamaica over a week now and all of the things that seemed so strange at the beginning of this trip are feeling more and more familiar.  I know from last year that I will experience culture shock when I land back in the U.S. just like I did when I got here to Jamaica last Friday, but I imagine it will be worse this time since my trip was longer.  Either it is a little cooler now or we have gotten more used to the heat as well.  It is still hot, but our minds are not constantly thinking about it like they were when we first arrived.

 Today was the Emancipation Day holiday in Jamaica and the Lord must have decided that our team needed a ministry break because all of the ministry related things we had lined up fell through mainly because of the holiday.  (Now, clearly the Jamaicans knew Aug. 1st was Emancipation Day when these things were being planned, but they waited to back out now – but that’s Jamaica.)  So we went to a street festival at Independence Park and then went to a small beach called Hellshire Beach.  We didn’t swim, but we had some very cheap lobster for dinner there.  We finished off the day with a trip to Devon House for their famous ice cream.

Tomorrow we sing for the morning service at church and then lose three members of our team who are flying home early.  Tomorrow night we will have a communion service at another church and lead worship there.  After that, we spend one more night in Kingston and return home!

Although it is tough for me to have a day where I feel like I’m not accomplishing anything, it is important to have those days sometimes.  God has been working on me to be less task-oriented and instead be ready to stop and just show love to people.  I can get so focused on getting the next job done that I forget that the people are more important than the task.  After all, God didn’t give us a long to-do list, He told us to love one another.  With that in mind, when I saw someone get their car stuck in the sand at Hellshire Beach, I walked down the beach and helped them push it out.  Although that sounds like a simple thing, it is completely out of character for me as I usually just don’t want to get involved.

Looking forward to a great day of worship tomorrow.

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