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Getting Oriented!

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Greetings from Belize!

This place is incredible; gorgeous, tropical, warm…and windy!

This week has been entirely orientation…and has been a tad overwhelming, but so good. Getting to know the team and staff has been a lot of fun. We are similar in so many ways, and yet, unique and completely different as well. There are 10 students; seven girls, and three boys. We have a couple girls from Seattle, and the West Coast, a Kiwi, and Floridian. The boys are from the East Coast and England! So far, each person has been really cool, and get this – we all LOVE to exercise! So in the mornings we have been going for runs down the beach, and it is so much fun.

We also really love Jesus, or at least want to get to know Him more…so as a team; we’ve been doing that too. A few nights ago we shared stories of how God has worked in our lives. It was an incredible, powerful, and emotional night. Another night, we asked God to reveal idols in our lives, and prayed for Him to remove them. That was difficult. Most of my “idols” I really want to cling too – missions, exercise, family…but in order to be fully satisfied with Christ, I realize I have to let them go, and TRUST God, when He says He has it all under control. I know we are just getting started here, but already I’m being stretched and challenged.

On Saturday, we had our first introduction to the sail boats and our scuba gear, as well as our chores. My work duty was to clean the Library, and two casitas (The little cabins we
stay in). I may be in paradise…but I’m not completely on vacation! As soon as we finished cleaning the houses, I learned how to cut a coconut with a machete! That was exciting, but the greatest adventure was the boa constrictor eating an iguana! I’m hoping it’s not the big one I just met, and named Thomas, but it may be, because he was about the same size. Our base is teeming with animals. We have two dogs, Hermy – the giant blue crab I almost step on everyday as I walk to and from my casita, and George, our resident lizard living in our ceiling. There are also crocodiles in the swamp behind us, but I haven’t seen them yet. I am looking forward to that! Hopefully in the morning, I’m going spear fishing – I can’t wait for that and to eat the fish we catch!

As we continue our time here, I pray that we all can keep up with the studies and chores, as well as really get to know our fellow students…and above all – to draw closer to God.  I also pray for us to remain teachable and have a humble spirit…and to really trust God in every aspect of our lives. And finally, I pray that I can relax, and just have fun and stop worrying about the future.  God is in control and He will guide and protect me!!

Ann Hefflinger – April 2012 Leadership DTS

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