Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Sometimes you have to look harder to see the truth.

I have been reading through Mark this week. It strikes me how Jesus speaks the truth, but his followers struggle to understand, to see the meaning. I think I identify with the disciples sometimes!

I saw an example in nature this morning. I took a photo out our window of a tree covered with dried pods and leaves:



But if you look really closely, one of the pods is not a pod at all!


May God give us the grace to be truth seekers.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Getting settled in Costa Rica

Greetings from San Jose! We arrived in Costa Rica three weeks ago today, and have seen God do some amazing things in a very short time. We came down in January and bought a condominium, so when we came back in February, our first task was to close on the house. Things are a little different here. The condo is owned in a corporation, so Jeanie and I became 100% owners in a Costa Rican company that owns as its sole asset the condo we live in. We each own 50 shares. I thought I should go for at least 51, but Jeanie said 50/50 Smile. The best feature of our new home is the view from every room. We look out over the city and the mountains. The sunsets are spectacular!

Small sunset

We sold our living room furniture and appliances in Bolivia, so we bought all of that in the first week while we waited for our container to arrive. We found just the right stuff that fit in our new space. The container from Bolivia arrived a little over a week ago, and Jeanie really took charge! In around 3 days we were all unpacked and pictures were on the walls. Jeanie is a real blessing to me, making a home wherever we land.

Transportation was also a priority. We sold a couple of cars in Bolivia and decided to buy just one here. We settled on a 2006 Toyota Corolla, which for me is a dream come true. My dream was to own a car built in this millennium!

We have been so focused on getting settled that we haven’t seen much of the country yet, but we’re looking forward to getting to know our new home. Yesterday we drove about 10 miles to the town of Cartago. It was the first capital of Costa Rica. The highlight is the ruin of the cathedral that had been under construction when the Santa Monica earthquake of 1910 struck. Construction was permanently stopped. The ruins are now the centerpiece of a beautiful park, including gardens inside the ruin itself.

cartago ruin small

Getting to know the people has been fun. Most of our contacts so far have been realtors, lawyers, car dealers, window treatment guy, furniture and appliance dealers, etc. I have been very pleasantly surprised by the extra effort folks have made to serve us honestly and efficiently. With all that we have had to do in these first weeks, it has been a blessing to deal with such kind people. To be honest, there was one crook among the bunch, but we discovered the fraud before spending any money.

The transition officially ends later this week as our Leadership team meets here in San Jose, followed by our National Directors conference starting Sunday. Our leaders will be coming in from all over Latin America and the Caribbean. Please pray that God will draw us together and that everyone will go home with a fresh vision and stronger walk with Jesus.