Friday, January 29, 2016

Pura Vita Livin

Hola from the montañas of Costa Rica! (I know that word because it's on our coffee bag. Still can't make a sentence in Spanish. Workin on it.)

We only have 10 days left in this beautiful place. I absolutely love it here, and our team is getting so close. It's going to be super hard to leave them. I don't think it's fully hit me that when I go home (which I'm excited for) I won't be with them anymore. I know it's an elementary thought, but I get sad every time I realize I'm only with them for three more weeks.

Last weekend was a refreshing one for our team as we got to pack our bags and stay in Grecia for the weekend. (Strong Missions had a karate camp for kids so we got the boot.) Grecia is only a ten minute bus ride away, and we got to stay in the coolest hostel ever. It was Inga's birthday, so we dressed up went out to dinner as a team when we got to Grecia. 

Ministry for the weekend was titled "life", and it's exactly what it sounds like. Our leader felt that God wanted us to practice doing life with God in the center. If we're called to be like Jesus, then we have to learn to do ministry as Jesus did. So we went about our day on Saturday doing what we would normally do. But instead of talking amongst ourselves or looking at the ground as we walked or waited in line, we were intentional about smiling and saying hi to people as we walked by or finding hurt or sad people and praying for them. 

Just living life together. :)

Our team came back with some really cool stories of divine encounters with people who just needed some love. 

That night, we wanted to go hang out in the park across the street from our hostel. We went out with music, a ball, some coloring books, and playing cards in hopes of attracting locals to us. 

Right away, we turned on music and a group of boys came and sat on the steps of the church to laugh at our [lack of] dancing skills. (Except Alex who can bust a sick move or two.) We got them to join in a little bit. It was cool to hang out with them. And they didn't even realize they were dancing to Christian beats. 

Some of us saw that the stage was free, so we sat in the middle and sang worship songs. The acoustics were cool, so we were having fun harmonizing with each other. Then a group of young guys came up to us with tambourines and bibles. They spoke Spanish, of course, so it took awhile to realize they were there to worship with us. It was such a neat experience. There were several songs that we all knew, and with our two Norwegians, we sang the songs together in three languages. The spirit was so present. We were fired up. 

The cool thing about these ministry opportunities is that they're just practice for every day life. We have opportunities to love on people and pray all the time. The key is to use the opportunities given. I have seen myself realizing these opportunities so much more lately. It's cool to see evident growth in this area. 

We worked on the land on Wednesday. It was a HOT day, and we all left with sunburns. On our way home, two of our girls found puppies. The owners were apparently not able to feed them anymore and the girls were faced with the predicament of letting the dogs die or facing the wrath of our outreach leaders by bringing them home. They decided Jesus would save the puppies. So they did. 

Six little puppies. The cutest puppies I've ever seen. And Travis and Josh were only mad for a little bit. :)

They're currently sleeping in our shower. Strong missions people are helping us find homes for them. There are three left that need homes as of tonight. If any of you have connections in our area of Costa Rica who need puppies in their lives, hit me up! ;)

Wifi hour is over, so my update is too. 

Thanks for reading! And thank you for your continued prayers!! See you all soon!

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