This new nickname comes from the birthday celebration I attended on Sunday for my host family’s niece, Abigail, who just turned one (this was a fantastic time: I LOVED it!). Translated, it means doll, which I am nearly 100% sure is a combined reference to my hair and my pale skin…hehehe! I like it, though. I feel like part of the family.
These past three days have been HUGE! On Saturday the whole group went to tour an active volcano; we were able to stand over the crater and look into it (and smell the sulfur…that part wasn’t as cool)! It was so neat! LOTS of pictures were involved!
Sunday morning found me in attendance at Centro Cristiano Vida Nueva (New Life Christian Center). Three other students went along and we all were placed in a Sunday school class with the youth group. Their classroom was on a patio outside overlooking the majesty that is this place – it was so neat to fellowship with the body in another language! I was able to understand more of the lesson than I had anticipated. After church was the birthday party, complete with Costa Rican music and Minnie Mouse decorations! So fun!
Today I ran errands around town with my host parents, which marks our first real outing. Afterwards, they bought me ice cream at this adorable (and delicious!) place on the square. My host dad and I then proceeded to take sides on which was better: ice cream or coffee. Considering I am in a country whose main export is coffee, I feel the winner of this little debate is clear!
After the errands in town were finished, they drove me out to their son-in-law’s farm (he lives next door to us but owns land far away). We were bringing fruit seeds that we had dried to be planted. On the way, they pointed out coffee plants and sugar cane; it was cool to see those things in real life!
When we arrived at the farm, we were greeted by a man who I was introduced to as the worker of the land. He planted the seeds and visited with us with a smile (he knows my host parents very well already). Then, they took me for a little walk around their farm, during which I couldn’t help but notice little eyes staring at us. His family was observing the tour from their makeshift home that is located on the edge of the property. Two little faces peered out from behind walls of scrap metal.
Friends, I was hit immediately with a realization about how very, VERY blessed we are. You are sitting right now in a room that is likely air conditioned while looking at the screen of some electronic device that likely isn’t necessary wearing nice clothes with full knowledge of the existence of your next meal. I am not trying to preach from a soap box, but not realizing this often enough is something I am definitely guilty of. And yet it points out something incredibly real; if your joy is found in your possessions, good luck finding it. I ask only that you join with me in this prayer, first praying that I would be fearless enough to pray it fervently. My desire is that my eyes would be continually opened to a new awareness of the needs around us. My desire is that I would have a heart that is readily responsive to His leading. My desire is that I would love in a way that strives to mimic the way I have been Loved (He’s so beyond legit).
~Costa Rica Chica