This morning we got up, had our usual breakfast and then got ready. We travelled in our Tuk Tuk's to Sokhon's Church, or the City Church (the same place where the youth service and some of the English classes were). The service commenced and we were introduced to a short kids game and the losers had to go up the front and lead the children's dance. We all joined in and danced again to their hilarious children's song in Khmer (aka Cambodian) and their beautiful smiles and dance moves made it all the more funny. We performed a skit, sang 'Our God' and gave a few testimonies. Sokhon preached on the duties or roles of church members and for those of us who were able to hear the whispering translator, it was quite encouraging.
After this we travelled to a church in the village. We played a few games, did some dances and acted out a Bible story. After the service finished we did some more games including limbo and musical statues - which was a massive hit! Then it was time for the children's meal and we got to help serving the food.
In the evening we got to visit a boarding home for people in high school and university, and we saw some of the people from the youth service and Church service again. We all gathered in a large garage-type room and chatted for a little while. Then we played 'Untangle the Human Knot' which immediately made the room hot and sticky. Next we introduced 'Bum Shuffle' or 'Shuffle'. It involved sitting in a circle really close together with one person in the middle. The people on the chairs had to change chairs really quickly to stop the person in the middle sitting down. The flimsy plastic chairs, a dog running in and out of the circle and the speed and tactics of the Cambodians made the game epic! A few people fell on the floor, chairs got broken and a lot of laughter made the game really enjoyable for all.
After this a few of the young adults and teenagers shared about their life and how they came to be at the boarding home. Soon some of them began to cry and so did most of us. By the end there was barely anyone who wasn't crying. Stories of poverty, separation from families, conflict, grief, pain, abuse and violence were so deeply touching and eye opening. They also shared some of the current difficulties that they face living in the home, such as not having enough bedding or clothes and a limited amount of food. It was just an incredibly touching, but also heart breaking moment. Pete then shared a bit about his story and life. After this, everyone huddled together and we prayed for them. It was a unifying moment and demonstrated that although we are all of different places and backgrounds, Christ is at the centre of it all. Some of our group also got to see the areas in different rooms where they lived and again were deeply affected. We were all fairly emotionally shaken by this and we had dinner and headed back to the hotel to process everything.
"We love because he first loved us." - 1 John 4:19
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