Team LA-AX: Day 8
Name: Cameron E Stuva
Mission time elapsed: 8 days
Location: Los Angeles, California
The day started at 0530. We geared up to scale the most famous Hollywood Hill. The group rendezvous was at the van in the nearby parking lot of the Hope Preschool, currently being used as the team’s barracks. Mostly decked out in running shorts, yoga pants, tennis shoes, and sweatshirts to take on the mountain; to the team’s surprise Chris was wearing a nice set of state-of-the-art flip flops. Clear benefits of this selection consist of superior foot ventilation. As the team hiked up the mountain on the dirt trails and cement roads, the previous night of sports at the YMCA was taking its toll. Just after reaching the peak, a number of pictures and sighs at the view entailed.
Once the team was ready for the daily devotional, I lead the team in a devotional from Mathew 17:17-21 which reads “Then Jesus answered and said, ‘O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? How long shall I bear with you? Bring him here to Me.’ And Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of him; and the child was cured from that very hour. Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, ’Why could we not cast it out?’ So Jesus said to them ‘Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, [move from here to there,] and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you. However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting.’” Following the verses was prayer and worship lead by Connor. The beauty of the mountains all around us made God’s divine presence even more known during song. Once down the hill and in the van, many were desperately craving Aaron Bird’s personal favorite place in Hollywood, Starbucks. Now newly motivated, the team headed back to headquarters, where everyone showered up and prepared for a day of service to the good Lord. Doing the normal Trader Joes and Whole Foods runs to pick up the daily donations of food, the team them sorted out all the bags and boxes, and then prepared the meal at 10 for the homeless. After clean up the team had some down time to take naps, watch the NBA Finals, call loved ones back at home, or just sit and talk the wonderful and interesting people at Hope International. The team prepared a wonderful lunch for each other consisting of Lamb with a garnish, cantaloupe, fruit salad, and cookies. Feeling renewed from the naps and awesome meal, everyone sorted through tons more food and helped prepare and serve the 4 o’clock meal to the homeless and then following that another one for the Tuesday youth group that meets at Hope. They served a total of 133 meals to the homeless today, which is something to be proud of! It was a very cool opportunity to interact with other kids in the high school to college range. Everyone enjoyed the meatloaf that was prepared with broccoli and rice. After eating, everyone headed back to change and get ready to head to the Santa Monica Pier on the coast. Once there, people split off into groups to go to shops, coffee places, take walks on the beach, hang out at the pier, or whatever else their hearts desired. At the end of the day we all thanked the Lord for this absolutely brilliant trip that is now coming to an end.