Monday, December 20, 2010

Give me that hope..

As I was praying today, it was as if I was flooded with amount of pain that is on this earth and especially pain in the people's lives that surround me. So as I started to pray simple requests for healing, I started to write down my thoughts which then turned into a song. "We all need healing; Don't be to proud to say."
And then I started to list out different types of pain, but then the chorus consisted of "Give me this hope." It is funny because at first I did not have hope, but I just kept singing it. Literally by the end of my singing the song, God replaced my pain and concern for others with this beautiful thing called: hope. It is a hope in my God and what He is doing and why He has placed me here. This holy exchange is so beautiful because it is something I can never earn, but something He loves to give to his children. I was even asking God to overwhelm me with the tangible presence of the Holy Spirit.... I know what a request; but oh how he answered swiftly. You know when you have pain in your heart or compassion for others and you can feel it in your chest or in your belly? Well, that is what I was feeling. But then after I asked God for his sweet hope, I felt light and peaceful. So I had to write about it.

So if you are feeling hopeless, know that there is hope. Don't just sit and ignore God. He knows your pain and He wants to go to that place with you. Not only will Jesus share in your sufferings but He will give you hope in exchange. So go ahead invite Him there to that place.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Tanned feet in the winter.

Puerto Rico, Aruba, Bonaire, Grenada, Dominica, and St. Thomas. I had not yet traveled to five of the six before.  Some of my favorite aspects of the different Islands were to see the children and to see the variety of homes that were there. I found the tiny details exciting. Bright purple porches, or bright orange-red roofs. In Dominica each child is required to wear a uniform, and each school has a different uniform. I loved seeing them. Almost every child I waved at would wave back happily. I remember vividly this one little boy sitting on a doorstop with the door open and his mother in the background, and he was just sitting with one knee higher than the other watching the chaos pass him by. I saw him and wished I had a camera handy to capture this perfect scene. Then I realized he saw me looking at him and I waved as we passed and he waved back with his inquisitive eyes. So sweet.

For me Dominica was a highlight because of my interaction with actual people living on the island. By the end, they offered a place for C & I to stay. Part of me tried to imagine what life would be like there.. For sure it would force me to live much more simply than now and I would only need summer clothing. Black sand is everywhere because of the volcanic nature of the island. The island is so beautiful but definitely the poorest of all the islands we stopped at. To me the lack of contemporary architecture and commercialization increased my liking for the place.

This is only a bit of what I saw and what I did, but apparently it was one of my favorite parts about my trip.