Saturday July 8th

[Romans 8:28] And we know that for those who love God all things will work together for good, for those who are called according to His purpose. 

We were reminded today that just because we make our plans and expect them to go accordingly, does not always match what God's plan is. Our flights were delayed multiple times that put us arriving to Costa Rica 18 hours behind schedule on about 4 hours of sleep and waiting on some luggage to arrive on another flight due to the confusion. We were also reminded how far simple acts of kindness can go in these unplanned situations...a lesson we can all take home with us to use for the greater good.

[Colossians 3:12] Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience.

Sunday July 9th

Finally our feet landed in Grecia, Costa Rica! We have a team of 21 and we met up with a team of 29 from Texas. For some of us, this makes multiple trips with Strong Missions. We were able to reunite with some familiar faces from years past and see how much their families have grown. These are truly amazing people with hearts of gold. I feel so blessed to have had the opportunity to have first met them ten years ago. My [extremely] broken Spanish can only get me so far verbally so thankfully we have a few people who jump right in to translate. Charlie, the founder of Strong Missions said it best, "The love of God surpasses all language barriers." 

We are surrounded by greenery and the most beautiful landscape, photos simply don't do it justice. There will be stray dogs that roam the grounds and you can hear the birds chirping almost always. The program assistant also informed us how common the scorpions and spiders are in this area to which we all triple checked our sleeping area and baggage to make sure we didn't have any unwanted critters. As a team we were able to have some time to connect with one another and become more oriented to where we're staying, our schedule for the week and becoming accustomed to Costa Rica in a short period of time. Tomorrow is when the work begins, we will be working on site where we are staying so we won't have to travel far. For devotion time I shared a couple of my favorite verses centered around how we are all made for a unique purpose designed by God if we lean into Him and put forth our kindness, compassion, humility, gentleness, and patience miracles will be done in Jesus name. 

Psalm 139:13-14 For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that fully well. 

Matthew 17:20 I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.'

I pray that whether local or international you find something that sets your heart on fire. Something that reveals the passions of your heart and use it for the greater good. Even if you only encourage one person, that is one more life impacted by the love of Jesus. 

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