by Hanna Rose Harbison-Ruedisili, student participant
Today is Easter! And it has been one that I will never forget. We woke up to another cold morning and a delicious breakfast before gathering for our daily morning devotion. Chris delivered a wonderful message about humility, a topic that I loved focusing on, today of all days. Today was a day about pushing through our tired, sore, dirty troubles to remember why we came- to serve- and to give our families a home that they are more than deserving of. We were reminded that today is not about us, but about giving all of ourselves into acting as God’s hands and feet. Our morning devotion ended in a different way. Jordan and Gabe revealed the letters written to us by dozens of loved ones who support us in our mission here. We all loved reading these love notes from home, as it reminded us that because we have such a blessed life that we have to go back to, we must remember why we are here and must give our all today. Building today was quite an adventure with dozens of projects- from nailing plywood on the roof, to wrapping the walls, to tarring the top, and creating the concrete walls. Definitely the most messy day, although after yesterday I didn’t know that was possible. It was a truly unique and incredible experience to see what once was random piles of wood and sand become a sturdy home for the loving families that we dedicated our trip to. It was the most bittersweet day- one of pride for our hard work and accomplishments, one of learning in building and in conversations with locals, one of excitement for the new home, and one of sadness that it is almost over. It was truly amazing to finally hand over the keys of this new house to these beautiful families that have forever imprinted their handprints on my heart. Tonight as we leave the families, finish dinner, attempt to clean ourselves the best we can, play our final games at this site, and talk around the fire, I am looking up at the stars. I see how small each tiny pinprick of light is in the sky, yet how together they create so much wonder, like God in our hearts and us in His world. I am reminded of the sacrifices that have been made for us to be here, and on this day of celebration of rebirth and renewal, we are all so full of love. I know we have all been changed by this experience, and I am inspired to always be a light in the darkness of our world. I can’t believe its almost all over. I am so proud of all of us and what we have done. And I know our adventures aren’t over yet!