Friday, September 30, 2011

Lunch with pastors

During convention week I was able to have lunch outside of ZMI, with some of the many pastors that were there.  Not sure the name of the restaurant, but the food was delicious and the view out the window was relaxing.   It was interesting to see how they are once we leave the "church setting." They still maintained their testimony of course, but got to see a little more of their humor.  They definitely have something special in them (jesus) and it shows in every way.  Its nice to spend time with people like them, although they may not be perfect, they are good examples to us in different areas of our lives.  The way they behaved with their wives, traffic, the waitress and so on.  these are things that perhaps are not given in a sermon every sunday, but they preach it with their lives.  In the same way, many look to us, whether we know it or not, or even like it.  Our lives can be a the best message we have ever given.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

O the glory of your presence

It has been a pretty crazy week so far, but a great one.  Wanted to share this special a group from Chihuahua, Mexico did during the convention.  It is truly a beautiful song, and it was well done.  The first part is in spanish, then english. Everything sounded so great with the trumpets and strings.  Enjoy!!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Little ray of sunshine

Today I had the amazing privelage of having Pamela, (an old friend from back home), visit our beautiful ZMI campus.  She came and spent time with us in service and brought Cesar and I some home cooked domincan food.  It was a plate that was quite missed.  I pray she visits us again next week, it was great to sit and chat with her and see the great things she is acheiving.  Oh, and to top off her visit, she supplied me with some much needed nutella and some goya products.

Friday, September 23, 2011

My new hobby

So here in Waverly I have picked up a new hobby.  It is not one that is practiced much around here therefore making it a big hit.  Coffee making is the name of the game, cuban coffee that is.  This was one of those comforts of home I could not afford to leave behind.  That alluring aroma that governs the miami air with its refreshing kick and sometimes delicious taste was just too much to give up for these few months.  Indeed we, Cesar and I, armed ourselves quite well with stacks of coffee and our coffee making machine.  It has in these short couple of days become my routine to get me through the day.  The sweet smell of fresh made coffee inhabit areas of the mens floor ever so often as I enjoy my cafesito. The fun does not stop there as there are some who have become regulars to my little coffee breaks, as long as it is not past 5pm for then they will not be able to sleep that night.  It is a small joy that I can share with others and with practice, it is getting better and better.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

winning starts with beggining

So yeah, I'm three days in and now will comment on my first day. :)  Things are difinitely different here on the mountain, quiete, peaceful.  Takes some time to adjust but not too bad.  The staff here is great, and so are the other students.  Everyone is eager to learn and desire to grow in their relationship with God.  The first day, was a little lost, but things went smoothly, the other studens were very helpful.  I love the punctualitly here, everything gets done on schedule, keeps me on my toes.  Im pretty excited to begin to work with the kids, they look like a wild bunch.  I laughed when I read the paper that said that kids 7-10 have an attention span of about 15 minutes, I laugh because I can relate.  Mine is not much better.  Although things are quiet here, there is plenty to do especially with convention coming up and the assignments and responsibilities that we have to take care of.  My day was mainly filled with meeting new people and learning the ropes. It should be a fun 3 months.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Boasting about tomorrow

James 4:13-16 Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.” As it is, you boast and brag. All such boasting is evil.

On the first night that I arrived at ZMI, we had a welcoming party.  During the opening events, they made a small welcoming video for us that included several testimonies of first impressions of ZMI from former students.  They were quite funny, most I could relate to.  One of the closing statements came from sister Suzette, and in her statement she included the verse James 4:13-16.  It stood out to me because it directly speaks about how we love to make great plans for our future and put all our hope into it, maybe even all our money, time, energy, and resources.  In the end it is up to the Lord to decide what does become of our lives and our plans.  If you were to ask me a year and a half ago what I would be doing at this time this year, ZMI would not have even been in my top 10 list of back up plans.  My answer would have been more along the lines of: "be graduating from the police academy and be working as a police officer in miami-dade or nearby city." It is funny how I am no where near that plan, completely tossed out the window.  I rest though in knowing that this is where God has been directing my heart towards.  Perhaps for me, now, it is hard to see beyond where I am, to see whats on the other side of this hill, but I am sure as I continue to take small steps of obedience, God will reveal larger parts of His masterpiece, and if it is the Lords will, I will do this and do that.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Back to the hill

Visiting Boston was such a sweet experience.  I saw many of the citites beautiful buildings and parks.  It was a nice change from NY as Boston offers more peace and tranquility.  I saved myself from walking by taking a bike ride around town, my feet were quite thankful.  The bike system they have is awesome, you can rent them in one corner through an automated machine, and park it at any other bike station around town and continue using it until your time is up. Closed off the night with some delicious burgers and cheese fries.  The next morning, hopped on the bike again and rode off to the bus station.

It was great to return to ZMI and its quietness.  Rushing from place to place and the fast pace of the city, it became easy to forget about God and the fact that He would like to hear from me from time to time.  It was in those moments where the nature He created would leave me in awe that I would usually remember Him.  In contrast, the first thing we did here in ZMI before our little welcoming gathering, was to open up in prayer and worship.  It was so nice to come into His stillness for a change.  We ended the night with pizza, CAKE, and a fogata with some smores.  Despite the near freezing temperature (50*), everything was awesome.  As the night grew darker, the stars shined brighter, a sight rarely seen in miami.  Up on the hill, with no glow from the city, it was easy to appreciate the night sky.

I was a bit saddened to have missed "Exalt," the event my home church "Maranatha," was having on Saturday.  Despite this, I received a good report about the event and so rejoiced, and I am so proud of all those who were participants and helped put it together.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Treasure Hunt: NY edition

After a quick break in beautiful Waverly, NY, we headed to NYC.  We were still very much tired from the long 26 hour trip but looking forward to what the city holds.  Time Square greeted me with it loud streets, busy walk ways and bright lights.  The lights filled the streets to where the darkness of the night was eradicated by the billions of watts making the atmosphere glow.  After being lost for 20 minutes I met up with my friend Alejandro and so began my NY adventure.

First thing we did that night was get some NY pizza! so after my new friend Roxy came and joined us, we headed to this little pizza place right there in Time Square. The next day was filled much walking.  Alejandro and I started our journey at the statue of Liberty.  There is so much to learn about her history and those who came through NY as immigrants.  We did more walking through central park enjoying some hot dogs along the way.  The rest of the day consisted of, you guessed it, more walking.  We were able to enjoy the many immense buildings, structures, fashion, delicious food and the NY culture.  The trip took an interesting turn when I realized I needed a couple personal items such as: toothbrush, sweater, hangers, pillow and comfy shoes, and Alejandro's belt and sunglasses.  Being on a tight budget we wanted to find everything for 5$, no such luck, but I managed to get a hold of a toothbrush, a long sleeve shirt and some hangers, the rest will have to wait till the next treasure hunt. We had an excellent tour guide, Roxy, who showed us much of the city, as much as possible in one day and until our feet could no longer take it.  Of the many places we visited, one was "ground zero." It was an impacting reminder of what occurred on 9/11/01 as all that stood now is an empty spot where two 1450 ft towers where before, yet definitely the smell of new hope was in the air as many of the buildings around the area have some sort of support for those lost and the reconstruction project.  That day will never be forgotten.

Hope you enjoy the pictures: