This past week, my hubby and I, along with 9 other members from our church including our Senior Pastor and his family, embarked on a road trip to New Orleans. The reason we were going up to New Orleans was because our church's worship team would be ministering to the people attending the 2nd Annual Congress of Hispanic Southern Baptists (Segundo Congreso Hispano Bautista Del Sur) through the worship.
We left Tuesday morning at around 7:30 am and arrived at 10:30 pm in New Orleans. We checked into our rooms in NOBTS and immediately went to bed. At first, I was hesitant about not being able to sleep in the same room with my hubby (the girls stayed in the Spurgeon Building while the boys slept in the Dodd Building) but it turned out to be such a wonderful experience. And to top it off we were the only ones in the dormitory and got the one room with the bathroom inside the room.
On Wednesday morning, after preparing a homemade breakfast in our room, we drove down to the French Quarter and snapped a ton of great pictures. My hubby was fascinated with the mystery of the city and although the kids were party poopers (didn't want to try the gumbo or jambalaya) we had lots of fun.
On Thursday, Manuel, the worship leader from one of the local churches showed us around the "Big Easy". He took us to the Riverwalk and the French Quarter but this time we actually got a glimpse of the local musicians playing the good ole jazz music in the streets of New Orleans. It was a fun and hot day.
Our Friday was pretty much booked from 7:30 am - 10:00 pm with the activities at "La Confraternidad". I got to attend an awesome conference taught by the hysterical and extremely knowledgeable Dr. David Lema, Jr. (One interesting fact: Dr. David Lema was actually the pastor that was preaching at Resurrection Baptist Church the first day I visited the church. It was on this day over 9 years ago that I knew that the only thing that was missing in my life was Jesus.) What a blessing! Afterwards, we went to a local dining spot that served authentic po boys sandwiches, I opted for a patty melt instead (the idea of eating old bread didn't really appeal to me but the boys did seem to enjoy their sandwiches).
And on Saturday after dropping off Benji (aka Hermano Benjamin) at the airport we packed our bags and attended the last day of the conference. The guys played in the band with the worship team from the local church and then Dr. Raul Vasquez delivered an outstandig message that really spoke to my heart. I renewed my commitment to serving Christ. Oh and "La Fiesta de Hispanidad" was wonderful. In Luki's words, "I've never seen so much free food in my life."
Our week in New Orleans was awesome and although it was a 14 hour drive each way (a little longer on the way up) I feel blessed to have been able to participate. I am really looking forward to next year's conference but I will say that I am reconsidering the whole roadtrip idea. I think a short airplane trip will be a better option for all of us. Let the fundraising begin!