Saturday, December 13, 2014
“The Great Commission is the Great Adventure of Christianity.” ― Ron Luce
We have always loved adventure from hiking to the bottom of the Grand Canyon in the early seventies to walking across a frozen Walden Pond near Boston to serving God in the slums of Curitiba, Brazil. Our greatest adventure is now here answering the call of that still, quiet voice that gripped and overwhelmed our hearts. Here, we have to shop every day and then clean the rice and beans as Juliana does this just the way they did it in Jesus’s day, tossing the rice up in the air and catching it in a basket and then picking out the rocks and other bad stuff. If we want meat, we have to give Juliana the money the day before so she can be at the butchery at 7:30 in the morning to get the best cuts of meat just after the cow is slaughtered. Now, what isn’t bought early hangs in the shop till the late afternoon, covered with flies as the price goes down and down. When Juliana gets back, she has about a two hour job of cutting the meat into pieces we can cook and getting rid of the bones and gristle. There is virtually no fat, as these cows are grass fed and very lean. Vegetables are bought fresh every day in the market as well. Fruit mostly grows on trees on our property from bananas to papayas to passion fruit and lemons. Clothes have to be washed by hand and line dried under a shade to keep the sun from fading them. Underwear has to be dried on a line that no one walking by can see as it is considered offensive to the local culture. There are no lawn mowers or weed eaters, the grass is cut and trimmed by hand with long-handled blades. It takes two men about three days to do all the grass, especially during the rainy season. In the early morning, Karen has her coffee on our back porch while I sit with her watching the sun come up, our dog Sissie enjoying being outside and greeting the children and adults who walk past our fence on their way to work and to school. Our neighbor has a mango tree and the children sneak over to snatch as many as they can carry before he hears them and chases them away with his broom and then waves cheerily to us. Life here isn’t much different that it was on the farms in the U.S. in the thirties and forties, except we have indoor plumbing, but almost no one else does. Of course, we have a preschool every morning and get to hear the laughter of the children as they come in to get their cups of hot porridge before they start their day. In the afternoon, we have an English class because if you can’t learn English, you can’t move from primary to secondary school or from secondary school to university. Karen has been teaching English here for ten years and had a meeting yesterday with the parents as we are having to raise the tuition from $7.00 a year to $20.00 a year, but the results have been so outstanding, no one complained. In the picture at the right you can see a happy father listening to his son read in English. Just a typical day here. We can sleep sixteen, so you are always welcome to join us in our adventure.