Thursday, July 19, 2012

Costa Rica: Day Two- 7/18

Yesterday road a bus to a local grocery store, Pali, to buy some groceries for a family we were going to visit. We went to visit Jose Antonio's family. Jose Antonio is a boy that Cross Creek has been supporting for some time now. He is a special needs boy who, recently, had the opportunity to to be accepted into a program to help reign in, his more of less, spastic behavior. Through horse therapy, Jose has been able to begin learning how to do tasks like wiping off the table. These tasks, while simple, show how much improvement has occurred. It was neat to be able to hear about how far this little boy has come! We were able to bless them with food and pray over them. I (Lacey) offered to start the praying and during the prayer, all of the sudden, I became overcome with emotion. I wasn't expecting to cry, and I wasn't just crying I was weeping, tears continued to flow even after I had stopped praying. I really don't know what I was praying, I truly believe God was praying through me. It was so powerful to have our group pray for these people.

After we left Jose Antonio's house, we walked to a little alley to play with kids in the area. You know the saying, "Build a walmart and they will come?" (referring to rednecks, from Tim Hawkins) Well here we say, "Bring a soccer ball, and they will come!" There were two soccer games going, some coloring in coloring books, jumping rope, throwing the Frisbee, and playing with chalk. It was great to interact with and experience the culture through laughter with the kids. A lot of memories were made and even more pictures taken. :)

Next we came back to the team house to eat lunch and when we were done we left to go back to another Pali that was closer to 6:8. This time we were buying food for care packages that we are going to distribute today. (7/19) From the store, we walked to meet these two twins who have been addicted to drugs and on the streets for 15 years. Their home was a concrete house with concrete slabs to place the mattress on because they had sold their other bed to buy more drugs. They didn't have a door either because they also sold that. The community of Alajuelita frowns upon them because they have always been begging for money. Everyone also views these men as the lowest of the low. We gathered around these men and prayed for them. Afterwards, as we were standing there, buses would drive by and the people would stare at us because they knew how "terrible" these twins are. Yet, Christ tells us that when we serve the least of these we serve him.

All of our days are very full and a lot of us have been saying how it feels like we've been here for so long. We really have just been blessed to see how much God has worked in how little time we actually have been here.

We ended our night yesterday with a trip to San Jose, the capital. We took a bus in and then did a bit of walking to get to the market. Sadly, Kirstin began to feel pretty dizzy and slightly nauseous. Shane thinks that she may have vertigo only because Sara does as well. (maybe hereditary?) We walked to eat some pizza and I think she was starting to feel better then. After we ate, Spencer, was greeted by a friend of his. Spencer told his friend that if he wore the boots that Spencer gave him previously, Spencer would buy him groceries. We stopped so Spencer could get some groceries and then we got to pray over Spencer's friend. We then walked near, but not in front of the Hotel Del Ray. This place used to be a hotel but has now turned into one of the biggest brothels in this area. There are casinos, strippers, and prostitutes that fill this place of darkness and evil. It was getting later and if it had been earlier, we would have seen families dropping off their mom's and their daughters. Again, we stopped to pray. It was heartbreaking to know that this is how a lot of people made money.

When we made it back from our bus ride, we all got to hang out, some on the balcony, some downstairs. We talked and talked. There was an intense game of Liar's dice (from Pirates of the Caribbean) with a bunch of the guys. I know what your thinking, what a game for a mission trip, eh? ;) While we are here, we are on Costa Rica time, which means, things happen when they will. So, because we have to be flexible and we've been staying busy, we haven't had a chance to upload some pictures but I will try to have those for the next post.

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