That’s how I feel right now. We just finished a revival with Pastor Rudy (aka Rui pronounced Huey) Estrada. That was what the teens in church called him. Lol. It was so awesome, so encouraging, so…. Refreshing! Probably more so for my hubby than me because they’re close buds but I’m so excited for all God did this week.
We all need refreshing. We pour our hearts and lives into our churches, homes, families, kids, jobs, ministries, etc. Geesh! I’m exhausted just from writing that list! I love revivals. They bring a much needed break from the norm. They bring a much needed shake up from our complacency. They stir our faith, reenergize our batteries, and get us out of our funk.
This one encouraged me so much! There were so many words given and healings that took place. I was overjoyed for our church. God didn’t leave us out and our family received a timely word as well. Our kids felt especially excited and spiritually fed this week.
Here are my kiddos answering the altar call again. My favorite night. 😂
We had 7 visitors, all received salvation, and 5 kept coming back. The church was stirred. It was an awesome revival. He also rapped each service and the young guys in the church are already thinking of lyrics they can change. The Saturday after the revival they called my husband asking, ” What time does outreach start? ” We’re excited for what’s to come and just because Pastor Rudy is done preaching doesn’t mean the revival is over! The Wednesday after the revival my hubby prayed for the Holy Spirit and all the new people were filled! C’mon somebody!!!
Here’s a pic of the new young men in church. The last service they brought their Dad and Uncle and they were both healed and received salvation!
Below: Jane has had pain in her knees and feet for months.
Not anymore! Praise God!
Below: The last day the Dad’s and Uncle came to service.
Below: The Vilde-Lopes family (3 are missing) bought Pastor Rudy a Brazil flag and some gifts for his wife and kids. They’re a huge blessing.
I could tell Rudy was amazed by the peoples appreciation and generosity. Just like I said, “Brazilians have an amazing, friendly culture”! I can’t wait for the rest of you to meet them! We’re grateful to call them friends.
Three young people were given words about the big plans God had for their lives and the impact God wants them to have on their generation. The teens just started school this Monday and one of the teens told my husband he went back to school and told all his friends he got saved and is a different person now. Praise God! Another lady was told to ” keep praying “, that God hears her prayers. I know this lady prays fervently for her families’ salvation. I’m grateful to God for speaking into their lives.
On to the fun!!!
Something that I’ve always wanted to do or see… you could call it a dream of mine (I don’t have many other than reading a good book with some delicious coffee…. I know, I know… dream big Melody). Anyways, I’ve always wanted to see a waterfall. They look so beautiful in pictures. We knew there were some around here somewhere, so we took Pastor Rudy and went to find them. There’s a beautiful place around here called Serra do Cipó, part of that is a National Park. The web says you can camp, fish, ride horses, go mountain bike riding, ziplining, rappelling, hiking, canoeing, rock climbing, swimming, visit the waterfalls or caves and more stuff if you can believe it! It was about an hour and half drive but, oh so worth it!!!
First thing first was to get some grub! My oh my, it was delicious! I love the set up at this restaurant.
Mmmm…. Mineira food from our state is supposedly some of the best in the country. I won’t argue with that!
After eating we drove down a long, narrow, bumpy road to the park area only to be told half way that the road was being worked on so it wasn’t safe for travel. They suggested we get mountain bikes and ride 4k to the park…. Or horses. So off we went to rent bikes but all the bikes were IN the park. We could secure them there at the rental place but then we’d need to walk and get them at the park. Sigh….
4k isn’t much of a walk. We’re used to walking more than that now and that’s up and down hill. So off we went!
It was hot! We all got sunburned except the genius with the towel. Haha! When you can’t see the end of the road it seems so much farther so it felt like a long walk.
This pic is from the internet but we saw one of these on the way.
This picture makes it looks small but it was big. Looked kinda like a snake at first with just it’s head sticking out. It’s called a Golden Tegu. On the same path everyone saw a toucan but I missed it! How sad!
Half way there, we were getting tired because of the heat and I was second guessing our decision to go to the park. The big waterfall was closer but some locals said the park was better because it had waterfalls too and more things to do. Thankfully, a worker in a small truck stopped and gave us a lift the rest of the way. BUT!
Once we got to the park we were told the nearest waterfall was 16k away! Also, those falls were small! Nossa! We were exhausted already. So we got our bikes and headed right back down the way we came. It would’ve been awesome if we had gotten there sooner and my kids were better bike riders because there is lots to see and do but the terrain wasn’t for kids.
The way back was mostly downhill so it was pretty fun once we figured out how to maneuver through rocks and puddles. I’m insanely proud of my kids they were troupers. I worked out muscles that didn’t know existed! If you look closely you can see Jason on Rudy’s shoulders! Jason can’t ride a bike so he would’ve had to walk. I can’t believe he gave him a ride almost the whole way! Wow! He’s Jason’s hero now. Hehe!
Finally we were off that crazy road and on our way to the waterfalls. This entrance doesn’t allow cars but the falls are less than a mile in and there are many entrances to choose from on the way to the large one like; the smaller waterfall, some calm waters or you can walk to the end a see the large waterfall. We went to the large one.
Look! In the pic below you can barely see the large waterfall. It’s the white part in the middle of the photo.
Back to the trail…
Almost there! This is a sign for the little one.
Ah! This is the sign we’re looking for!
We made it!!! But we want to be at the bottom, not the top. My gosh it’s beautiful! The water is usually semi clear but it’s been raining all week so it looks muddy today. Infelizmente.
We found the walk way to the bottom. Watch your step! This could be dangerous.
Ahhh!!! Gorgeous and worth the walk.
That day was probably the most fun I’ve ever had. They’re are some caves around here as well and one day we’ll check those out too. Now that we’ve explored more we have an idea of things to do when people come and visit. Hint hint…
Well, it’s been great chatting! Pray for us as we pray for you!
Saudade de Vocês,