"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.' "
Jeremiah 29:11

Sunday, March 24, 2013

God's little reminders

My devotional this morning was spot on:  exactly what I needed to read, and when I needed to read it.  Coincidence?  I think not.  So many times, this happens to me. It's not that I feel lost or anything, but a gentle biblical reminder finds me at just the right time.  I remember one day last December in particular.  I was having a hard time with the decision about signing a contract to stay in Costa Rica for another year.  I was sitting at the bus stop, and I opened up to that day's devotional.  "You are reaching a crossroad in your journey."   Woah!  I then read a reminder to be willing to go out on a limb for God--follow where He is leading me...I found encouragement to relinquish my desire to play it safe to more wholeheartedly follow God.  We all know where that story ended up.  I was at a crossroads last December, but I had to let go of the little worries and what ifs.  More pressing than the risks I faced by staying in Costa Rica another year, I heard my heart calling me to finish what I had started here.  

So today I was reminded to let go.  No, not let go, learn to let go...

Being in Costa Rica has been a series of lessons for me, and releasing control of my life to God has been one of the biggest lessons that I am still learning.  Take the earthquake last year, and the many aftershocks, for example.  After September 5th, I was living in fear, hyper-vigilant of what might happen next.  Every little sound or shake was another earthquake.  Sleep was another story all together.  I let my mind get the best of me, allowing me to live in fear.  That's because I was trying to be in control.  Me, little human me.  God and His power to move the earth are so immense that I cannot even fathom; a God that can move the earth can most certainly calm my fears.  And He has.

I'm certainly learning to cope with the distance between me and my loved ones.  That's not to say that I don't miss them, but by being here in Costa Rica alone, God has been allowing me to learn and discover who I am.

As far as possessions go, well, I still have a lot, I'm not going to lie about that.  But living in a third world country has really opened my eyes to what's important in life.  The difference between needs and wants.  I don't make a lot of money, but I don't feel "poor."  I don't have hot water at my house, nor do I have a washing machine.  All my dishes must be hand-washed as well.  I ride a public bus to and from work and the grocery store.  It has been a blessing to be reminded of all the things I was taking for granted before.  I appreciate what I have so much more.

Back to the fact that I still do not have my work permit.  I may or may not have to leave Costa Rica before April 22.  I can even work on "letting go" of that a bit.  Fact of the matter is, it is out of my control.  I have turned in my documents, so there is absolutely nothing I can do.  It is unsettling to me not knowing what's going to happen with my status in the next [less-than] month, but I need to release this worry--there really is nothing I can do.  

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