Monthly Archives: July 2012

Final Goodbyes

I know I said that the last post would be my last, but that’s only because I thought I wouldn’t have another opportunity to sit down and write out another post.  So, here I am again.  Now, if things had gone according to plan, I would be in Lima right now trying to nod-off to wake up and fly out at noon the next day to go to Colombia, but that’s pretty much not what is happened.  I’ll get to that.

Today, I woke up at 6:10 a.m. because I just couldn’t force myself to act asleep any longer.  The shower in our bathroom is what we call a “widow-maker” because it has the capability to do just that.  Water comes into the shower head where a metal coil is charged with electricity, thus warming the water and pouring out onto the user.  Somehow the electricity is grounded so that nobody gets shocked unless a stray hand comes too close to the shower head and then you do get a bit of a buzz.  Well, this past month the water has been cool, which when you live in the mountains where ice can be found on the ground all day long, cool is cold.  So, since it was my last shower I took apart the shower head and plugged up some of the holes with toilet paper and enjoyed my last, but hot, Puno shower.

While I was showering I was freaking out about the day.  My strings were drawn pretty tight inside of me.  So, I took some time to pray about what was happening in my heart.  I was thinking a lot about control and how I really have none of it.  The only person I have control of is me, and I have the control to give up the desire to control things.  I know this is a topic I revisit once and a while, but I think that every time I have mentioned it I have new perspective.  But, after I felt that I gave it over to God completely I started mentioning things that I could control.  I could control how I react to disturbing news, what I say to others, etc.  And then I started going through in my head what I would do that day.  And then it dawned on me that I had to say goodbye to Thomas and Ella.  They are Amanda and Chad’s two kids.

I haven’t been emotional until today.  When I thought about leaving Thomas and Ella and having to say a final goodbye to them, I lost it.  I had broken the seal and the rest of the day was a hard emotional roller-coaster.  Even as I got in the car with Brian to head off to Juliaca to say goodbye to my contacts I couldn’t stop.

I had been praying all week that God would let me cry for my contacts, to show them that I care for them and that this departure really matters to me.  That it does hurt.  But, when I was saying goodbye to my contacts in Juliaca, it didn’t come.  But, I realized that maybe that’s not what they needed.  They needed someone to be stronger than they.  Someone that could encourage them onward.  So, instead of hugging them and sobbing my eyes out like I did for the rest of my Puno family, I stood by them, accepted their hugs and their tears and told them to keep following Christ.  I told them that I love them very much, but that God loves them more.  I may have been there as an instrument to be used by God, but it was ultimately and only Him that has changed their lives and placed a call on them to come to His feet.  I was only a messenger.  I’m going to miss them.  And maybe I will mourn more later.

After we said goodbye we hopped back in the truck and Brian was going to take me to the airport.  So, we were cruising along toward the airport when to our surprise a bunch of strikers had grouped together in front of the airport gates and had put rocks in the roadway.  I rolled down a window and asked two ladies passing by if there were any flights.  Nope, they were all delayed.  I was not having any of it.  So, I got out of the car, unloaded my bag and went to see if what they said were true at the gates.  Sure enough, all flights were suspended.  I felt my heart drop and I wanted to hit someone.  This strike has been going on for three weeks.  They are teachers.  There has been no classes for three weeks!  And do you know what they want?  A 30% raise.  Pretty amazing.  I was mostly surprised and irritated that the airport would pay attention to a bunch of teachers standing outside of their airport or even that they would think somehow people who travel are directly linked to their teaching positions.

So, we headed back to the truck and I reloaded my things.  I was surprisingly calm at this point.  Usually, I would be a basket-case.  I would be a nervous wreck.  But, really the it just shows how the Lord has changed me in this.  I called Chad on the way back to the truck and told him to get me LAN’s number so I could call them and get something worked out.  He told Elisabeth from the office and she was then on the phone with me and then with LAN and helped us get some things cleared out.  In the meantime we just went straight to Arequipa, which is a four hour drive, to try and get on a flight from there.

Well, I’ve arrived in Arequipa and I went to the airport and I got my tickets rescheduled, but I don’t leave now until the 21st.  But, I have a place to stay here in Arequipa.  It’s pretty neat to think that I have some connections all across the country.  So, that’s where I’m at now.  I praise the Lord for the difficulties of the day, because it has taught me more patience and it has also shown me how the Lord can really carry my worries and concerns.  I praise Him also because with the new flight arrangement I get from Lima to Cali all in one day!  No spending the nights in any airports!  Praise His Name.

So, my goodbyes are done.  This chapter of my life is closed.  I have learned so many precious things that I would not give in exchange for anything in the world.  God, you are beautiful, and I’m delighted to call you my Father.  I ask you for many more times in my life like the ones that I have had.

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The End

Tonight, I literally feel the phrase “rest my weary bones.”  As I sank into my bed just now I felt my body tell me thank you for finally stopping.  Today was a big day.  I put as my status on Facebook earlier that “Wanna see if you can be cool-headed under high-pressure situations?  Have a garage sale in Peru!” – or something to that effect.  But, it’s true!

We had a sale in our home today, and the final day of sale is Tuesday.  Everything that we perhaps have accumulated over the past two years, or things that don’t fit us anymore or that we simply won’t need in the next chapter of our lives have been pinned or taped with a price tag and placed before the critical public of Puno.  It has been a successful sale as well as a frustrating one.  People are people no matter what country you are in!

So, here we are, five days until I leave this country.  I have learned a great deal about; God, the Bible, myself, how to treat others, basically many things in all forms of relationships.  I was just telling Kristen this afternoon about what Amanda said once about Extreme, how it can act as a sort of hospital.  It’s been that for me.  When I came to Peru I was spiritually sick, but it was my obedient step to follow God’s plan for my life that lead me the healing.  Peru has been my rehab.  It’s a safe environment with rules backed up by well-clarified authoriy.  I am so pleased and proud of the person that my Lord has formed, and continues to form, me into.  I would be hopeless without Him.

It is sad for me to watch the house be emptied little by little.  My room just seems so spirit-less.  The end is here.  The change is thick in the air and I am floating in it.

We went out to eat rotisserie chicken tonight after we closed the doors of our sale (7 pm) and we had such a good time.  It was Chad, Amanda, Franci, Sammy and me.  We laughed a lot.  And while we were eating and laughing I was thinking about how this really is coming to an end.  It’s not a date that is marked on the calender a month to come from now, but it’s here in less than a week.  There are many things I’m going to miss.  Many things that I will carry in my heart and treasure.  When particular songs play on my iPod or certain smells waft in the air I will transcend to Peru, and my heart will ache to turn back the clock and relive the “glory” of these times.  I know this because it is what always happens.  But, perhaps knowing it now more than ever I can appreciate more the end.

Last night we had a prayer service that to my surprise was more than just that.  The baby congregation in Juliaca had gotten me a farewell gift and had prepared a chicken dinner.  I was surprised, especially since I had said I didn’t want anything, because I know my brothers and sisters there don’t have much to give.  But, I was honored and humbled to be served truly for the first time by these people that I love so much.  I see the pain in their eyes that I say I have to go, but everytime I push them to not look at me, but to look at our Heavenly Father and to love Him.  To love Him more than they love on me.  It’s my prayer that they do.

Me accepting the beautiful gift from my brothers and sisters in Juliaca.

This will probably be my last post on Trevor in Peru.  As you all know I’ve decided to continue working with Extreme and I’ll no longer be working in Peru.  So, of course, I can no longer write as being in Peru!  As this chapter closes, so does this blog.  I will continue blogging, just a different one.  I will let you know when that happens.

Pray for me as I make my way home.  I have been praying for God to increase my faith in Him, and I ask that you help me pray that too.  For the next step I am making with Extreme I have to raise a surrmountable amount of money.  I am nervous, because I only have a month and a half to do it.  God has been leaving me little morsels leading me, comforting me.

And finally, but certainly not of any unimportance, I would like to thank you.  Thank you for your prayers.  Thank you for your financial support.  Thank you for being obedient to the Lord and becoming involved in this ministry.  It would be foolish to think that I have done this alone.  I praise the Lord for you all.  Thank you.

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