Costa Rica – 5.23 and 24 Update 2014
Friday morning we returned to the men’s prison to play against the young inmates in a soccer match. We were excited to return after having had the opportunity to connect with the boys the day before. They were thrilled to have the opportunity to play their favorite sport. PTR CR provided them with official jerseys and cleats and we even had officials. For not being in soccer shape or having played recently, our boys did very well … of course they had the help of 3 Tico men playing on their team, 1 of which scored 3 goals helping us come away with a 4-0 win. The girls enjoyed cheering on the sidelines with the inmates who were waiting their turn to play. We are so thankful we were able to provide these young men with the opportunity to play. They only play games on an actual soccer field 3 or 4 times a year. Needless to say, they had been counting down the days for this! We praise God that there were no problems and we had another chance to share a testimony of God’s grace, forgiveness, and redemption to those who so desperately need to hear it!
Friday afternoon we had both a women’s and men’s match against 2 of the best high school teams in the San Jose area. These were very last minute scheduled games and the ladies were more than thrilled to have the opportunity to play another match. The men helped the 3 girls from our team out by playing defense and setting while the girls hit. Our opponents played very well for having to compete against a team with 3 men on it, but in the end Push The Rock came away with the win in the 5th game.
After having played a match late the night before, a soccer game in the morning, and helping the girls out right before their game, the men had to dig deep for energy and strength to play against this excellent high school team. They did a phenomenal job and truly demonstrated sportsmanship and excellence in their playing. Each game was fairly close, but our young opponents had a bit more stamina to pull away with the W. It is a blessing to be able to share about God’s love in the public schools here. Both teams joined us in prayer and listened to testimonies from our players. They were very receptive to what we had to say and extremely grateful that we would travel so far from our homes to play volleyball with them.
Saturday morning was our last men’s match against another club team of men in their 20’s and 30’s. The boys were quite tired and lost the first 3 games, but they were determined to win their last game in Costa Rica and did so with a score of 25-20.
Following the game, we had a few hours to rest, eat, and share our longer testimonies with one another. I love this part of the trip, because it causes much more intimacy and unity among the teammates, not to mention it is extremely encouraging in our own personal walks with God. Afterwards we left for the Artisan’s Market to buy souvenirs. Following this we headed for the church and joined in fellowship with their young adult group. It was just a little taste of the service we will experience tomorrow morning.
Tomorrow is our first day to sleep in! Church starts at 10:00 and afterwards we head the mall to eat and fellowship once again with the church members. We will most likely play some laid-back soccer with members of the church in the afternoon. The team is looking forward to a day of well-earned rest. It is exactly what we need before starting clinics again on Monday!
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