Hey everyone! Thanks for coming to this blog to check out what God is doing on the #EncounterATL trip! He is already working in a big way and we cannot wait to see what He has in store for us next. Every day for the rest of this trip, we’ll have a student or students share about the day from their perspective. Today, you’ll be hearing from Deborah! Thanks for your prayers – we appreciate them!
Billy Starkey, Grace Students Director
Wow, it has been a busy and eventful two days!! Yesterday morning the whole team went to orientation at Encompass to be introduced to the ministry that we are helping out with. Our group headed to Buford Highway Farmers Market after learning about situations we might encounter and how to respect people we meet that are from other cultures. Buford Highway Farmers Market is a world farmers market that focuses on different ethnic and cultural foods. After we explored in the market for a while, we parked ourselves in the cafeteria for lunch that is provided there. Just a few of the crazy food items that we purchased and taste tested were raw octopus, camel’s milk, raw eel, bubble tea, rambutan, and chiquita mini bananas! After lunch, we headed back to the Encompass office and debriefed what we had seen at the market. We then headed to Best Friend Park and started to put together activities and skits for the kids camps that we would be holding at three different locations. Our teams headed to their locations at about 5:00 to set up the camps. We went around and made ourselves familiar with the locations and then began to introduce ourselves to the children. That night, two children from one of the locations actually accepted Jesus! We got off to a great start!! After the camps we ended the night with team time, dinner, and watched a disappointing NBA Finals game. All in all, day one was successful!
This morning the team headed to Encompass again to be educated on the Hindu religion. After, everyone loaded up the vans and we headed to a mandir, one of the largest Hindu temples in the United States, and began a tour. We witnessed some Hindus performing their prayer rituals and got the chance to ask questions about their beliefs and religion. We went from the mandir to the Global Mall to have lunch. We got the chance to try food from an Indian buffet and expand our cultural taste buds! Post lunch, we had a chance to explore the mall and then we went back to the hotel to regroup before camps. We then headed to Best Friend Park to work on skits and crafts for the second day of our kids camps. We, once again, had a successful evening at every single location! At debriefing there were many stories shared and compliments to others paid. We ended the night with team time and two wonderful, powerful songs. Praise the Lord for a successful first two days! We are praying for the rest of the week to be just as good and we are thankful for your prayers as well!!