Spain Update #4 July 1, 2010

Today started as did the other days with the schedule remaining the same.  The morning clinics, lunch, team time, afternoon clinics, PTR basketball game, super and finally bed.  What made today (Wednesday) a little different was that our morning clinic was to be held at the outdoor court we played at last year.  (That court was scheduled to have a roof put over it while we were here so we moved location and this year we’re in the municipal gym.)  However, the gym we’re at this year had a special volleyball event this morning and the outdoor court hadn’t begun construction on the roof yet, so we headed there for camp.  But much to our surprise, THIS morning the construction began!  We arrived to see all of the hoops gone.  Scrambling quickly, the local missionaries found a nearby outdoor court that we could use.  Through God’s grace, we were able to get the whole team there and also inform the kids that we moved location.  The message got out and we had a good turn out.  The camp at the hotel also went well today.  At the hotel, there are three groups of kids, ages 6-8, 9-10, and 11-12 with about 40+ kids total.  The coaches who are running our basketball clinic there met each group of kids with excitement and enthusiasm.  Having each group for about 45 minutes makes it tough to really work on the skills of the game, especially with the youngest group.  But as the days go by and the kids and their counsellors get to know the PTR coaches, the bond between them all is growing stronger each day.  The coaches now also have a ministry to the counsellors as well, doubling their efforts to reach the people of Tenerife for Christ.  The game played tonight featured the PTR men versus a local men’s all-star team made up of men from the Santa Ursula and two neighboring towns.  Missionary Nathan, church member Pedro, translators Andrew and DJ all donned PTR jerseys and joined our group of five to compete in the game.  The game is a great outreach to the local community to let them know that the church is in town and who some of the members are.  It was a great game!  The PTR team handled themselves well and were able to go up early in the game.  But, the other team was able to catch up and go a head by 2 late in the game.  With one second left, PTR took a shot to win the game, but missed and the other team won by 1.  It was a difficult way to lose, but the game was not a loss.  There were valuable connections made for the missionaries who will still be here long after we fly back home.  The PTR team demonstrated some good team work and are beginning to come together more as a team.  But the really cool thing we found out after the game was that the PTR team had earned the respect of the other team.  In the basketball world, respect is not given out easily and it is not given to those who do not earn it.  It is a worthy thing to work to obtain and it comes only when other respected players pass it on.  With their good play and sportsmanship, our team played in such a manner to earn the respect of others.  With that respect now opens a door for others to see not just the team’s basketball skills, but also those spiritual qualities that make playing for Push the Rock in Spain a possibility.

As always, we long for your prayers to sustain us.

For the team, Coach Brendan

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