By: Joyce Burmester
It was quite the “Bucket Day” for the Week 1 Missionary Crew for NITT on Tuesday.
It all started with the missionary teams being issued an NITT Bucket Challenge for the day. The story of Maria was shared; Maria is a local friend of the program who routinely uses 2 buckets of cold water to bathe both herself and her child. Could the spoiled Americans, in Guatemala for the week, do the same? Many on the team took on the challenge of cleaning up- after a day of building 20 stoves, pouring 3 concrete floors and pulling together an engaging VBS for 200 Guatemalan kids- using only a bucket of cold water. Brrrr! Great insight and appreciation for the difficult lifestyle of these gentle people deepened the resolve and purpose for this mission endeavor.
Back to the buckets. You might be familiar with the somewhat well-known story about being a bucket filler or a bucket dipper. Dippers take out from your bucket with discouraging words, put downs and hurtful actions. Oppositely, bucket fillers dip into their own bucket to fill others with encouragements and kindness. Surprise! When you dip into your own bucket to fill another’s, yours does not become empty……it fills up even more.
Some bucket filling moments from today, as shared at the team’s evening devotions:
- helping a fellow team member walk down a challenging hillside
- doing something for the first time with enthusiasm (like cutting a hole in a roof with aknife)
- singing “Jesus Loves Me” in Spanish to entertain a child, but instead strengthening a discouraged team member
- never giving up on learning and struggling through learning Spanish
- jumping into action to make better a soppy, uncomfortable setting for VBS
- great organization and calm spirit in leading VBS to success
- noticing and complimenting a personal strength for each member of the team
- wiping off dirt and grime from a beloved “Grandma” mug
- talking with and supporting individual children from the heart
- helping each other when the tasks were hard or discouraging
Our verse for today: Proverbs 11:13“A gossip betrays a confidence, but a trustworthy man keeps a secret.” We have been entrusted this week with a great task of caring for people in need.
Words of encouragement and support flowed from our buckets today as we were strengthened by the working of the Holy Spirit in this holy task of caring for others. The JOY of the Lord is our STRENGTH.