3 Worlds Collide

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This is a picture of our 3 worlds colliding – our Troy world, our new world in Trussville, and our PPM/Costa Rica family! Our week with Southside Baptist and FBC Trussville in Altamira (the mountain village) was surreal and such a tangible picture of God’s faithfulness in our lives.

Altamira was the first community we went to in Costa Rica… as participants. We hiked up a mountain with heavy backpacks to minister to a community of people who we hesitant to let us know them. The needs… spiritually, physically, and emotionally… of the Altamirans impacted us in such a way that this village will forever be etched in our hearts and part of our story. The women were so hard, showing no emotion, and having so many walls up I thought we would never break through. BUT GOD… through the simple act of sharing the Gospel and washing those ladies’ filthy feet, broke walls and made a way for love to win.

From that first trip in 2013 to this third trip up the mountain in March, the attitudes and openness of the entire community has done an about face! It’s incredible to see. It’s nothing we have done… but the people have allowed God’s Spirit to move, mend, and love. And that has made all the difference!

Since our first time in Costa Rica, we have become full-time with PPM, moved from Troy to Trussville, brought Eric home as our son, and are now pregnant! So crazy.  But as Jacob led this team… and united 3 of our favorite places… our hearts were overjoyed at all God has done. It was impossible for us to look out at the group during our nightly meetings and not be reminded of God’s faithfulness, His calling, His providence, His love, His grace, His guidance, and His will through it all.

When worlds collide with the goal of Jesus, regardless if it’s this trip or another, the Church can be THE CHURCH! There was complete unity, encouragement, love, and a common reason for everything that happened. The purpose of getting extremely sweaty climbing up a mountain to a remote village in Costa Rica was JESUS. The purpose of building a kitchen in the unique Costa Rican fashion, playing with kids until your muscles were sore, sitting on hard benches until your butt ached, hiking into the rainforest to fetch rocks for the foundation (HARD WORK), and sleeping in hammocks one on top of the other… JESUS! That’s how it should be. No division. No language barrier. No cliques. No excuses… just the goal of being Jesus to the people.

It was a blessing to be a part of this trip and an honor to call both of these groups ¨churches¨ – one where our ministry as a married couple started and the other has become our home in the present. It was a privilege to lead and minister with them in the country and with the people (Ticos) we love so dearly. I was an incredible week that will become another anchoring point for my faith… another time when I can look back and can say ¨Only God can do that…¨

Here’s some pictures from the beautiful week.

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Jacob and I got to lead together… always a joy.
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The women!!! Love these ladies and the fact I got to be a part of what the Lord had planned with them! 11130142_10101140824425706_2602251494614367290_n

Pastor Manuel (pastor in Altamira) standing on what would become a new kitchen for his church and community.
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A 97-year-old man! I didn’t know such a thing existed up in that mountain!! We went house to house in order to invite people to the church service, share Jesus, and pray with them… and we found him! 11041667_10101140817250086_477517321410488615_n

This is what it looks like to fetch rocks from a rainforest to lay a foundation for the kitchen! This was seriously intense work!! Each boy carried about 5 or more big rocks out of there… once they tossed them out of the river and up the bank… and they did this ALL day for TWO days! 11053256_10101140748752356_6253456704724232728_n

CHILDREN! 11120544_10101140747420026_3092073807040777145_n

Such a precious picture.10685375_10101140745693486_421842796051787612_n

So cool – the pastor wanted the team to leave their mark in the community. So, he asked them to put their hand print in the sidewalk they poured leading up to the church! Incredible!

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The view from the soccer field up there… not too shabby! 1902987_10101140742370146_2186916512466488560_n

Teaching the women to play Uno… SUCH an amazing ministry! Who knew?? The game got them laughing, opening up, and sharing life! 11091514_10101140735024866_3502191793108517240_n

WOMEN!!! Oh man… I love this picture.19802_10101140734411096_8276623574142494185_n

Sharing the Word of life through the Word! 10981956_10101140734101716_835760442791305222_n

The kitchen! 21025_10101140732604716_8838887270280084247_n

Another picture of the view… breath-taking! 11136630_10101140730354226_4691621355759066591_n

This is the traditional Gyuami dress for women. It’s an enormous honor when one is given to you. The pastor’s wife, Cecilia, made and gave these dresses to me and my Tica sister, Cirielle. We both cried when she called us over to hand these to us. It’s an invitation into their culture, a thank you, and a tangible gift of her love and acceptance. Wow. 11120508_10101140720968036_4170493746306439758_n

So awesome!! This is the kitchen that was built in 3 days! Obviously, the roof isn’t finished and the appliances had not been installed… but such an accomplishment! Go Jesus! 10421141_10101140719950076_4046589670777394520_n

Hiking down the mountain after a tiring week of ministry!
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Love this man…10569089_10101140716062866_3398648581063061320_nAnd, of course, the beach. This is Playa Dominical. It’s beautiful and perfect for surfing if you are into that kind of thing.

So grateful I get to call this my ¨job.¨ Only God…

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