Romania day 2
July 20th There are some moments in life that shift your perspective. Once you’ve experienced them, you can’t see life or your surroundings the same. That happened for many of us today. We visited a gypsy camp. “Camp” is a misnomer. There is little charming about the arrangement. In this camp, the fires aren’t for smores, but for trash. The tents aren’t Kelty, they’re plywood boxes. The inhabitants aren’t dirty for a “roughing it” weekend by their choosing; they’re dirty daily, for life, as it has always been for their family for generations. It would be easy to blame them. Say they should do better, but their decisions are shaped by their norms much like we see it as normal to do whatever it is we do. As a team we talked about the barrier that this façade created. It stood as a veil masking what their real need is. They need Jesus. The joy of Christ can be had in the midst of squalor the same as it can in the middle of 4000 sq feet. And the joy of Christ many had! They sang exuberantly. Shared willingly. They smiled broadly. Beneath the grime, the matted hair, the lack of clothes, shoes, or hygiene stood a joy, for many, that could serve as a model for those with plenty. Those with their own type of façade, masking their lack of joy.
Perspective shifting to say the least.
God has grown a love in many of us for these people. We long to soak up more of the invaluable thing they offer, while we think we are the generous ones with our things. What a paradox. No doubt both are needed in many cases, but one stood out above the other today.
After the gypsy camp we enjoyed a long conversational lunch and then headed to the site where we’ll hold camp this week (gorgeous!). Our team is gelling well with our teammates we’ve joined from South Carolina. Laughter abounds and friendships are blossoming.
Pray for us as we seek to prepare our hearts, and not just our heads for camp. We’ll hold a team worship service in the morning and then drive into Cluj for church Sunday evening. After we return, the moment will finally arrive…the campers start showing up! We can’t wait to see what God will do.
With a new view, The 2019 Romania Team
Ps. Need to sign off now…starting to get chilly and need to go inside 😊