Friday, January 10, 2014

Week in Lima

I arrived late Monday night to Lima.  I fly to cusco tomorrow (Saturday) and then catch a minivan to Curahuasi (pronounced "curawasi"; a 2-3 hour drive).  I'll be staying in the apartments on the hospital campus initially for a week or two. And possibly then moving into an apartment in town (a 15-30 minute walk from the hospital). I'll get some orientation on saturday and on monday.  My first day of work is Jan 20. So a get a little over a week to ease into the system/culture.
              My first day in Lima was the hardest because I didn't completely understand what I was suppose to be doing.  The Lord provided and the rest of the days have been refreshing.  Its kinda funny that God has to force a vacation upon me to make me slow down.  I've kinda been longing for the opportunity to sit down and read a book for a couple months now.  But when ever I finally got a day off from work it ended up getting filled up with errands and hanging out with friends and family (which i enjoy too--don't get me wrong).  I think I've read more the last couple of days (between hanging out and getting to know 5 other workers from the hospital who are at same hostel as I in Lima) than I have in the last 6 months.
              Below is my journal entry at the end of Tuesday (my first and hardest day). I share it because of a lie I've heard in Christian circles: that it’s easy for some people to leave their country, friends, and family and go to a new country where a different language is spoken, different foods are eaten, different cultural rules and habits exist.  Hearing and believing this lie, some Christians convince themselves that since none of those things would be easy or sounds fun to them that God's not calling them to serve in other cultures and countries.  I share the following so that you can know the truth.  It is never easy to leave everything and serve in a different location or culture. But God calls some (not all) to do so, and just because it seems hard, doesn’t me that he’s not called you.  Besides, as the Lord promised Joshua so the Lord promises use that He’ll be with us:

First Day in Peru.
            I’ve never been in another country as long as I’m anticipating being here.
            My heart kept dropping several times today
                        -Realizing I didn’t get a long enough visa time frame
                        -Realizing I was missing a document I needed from the States for my visa
                        -Realizing there are scope of practice issues even at Hospital Diospi
                        -Realizing internet reception is bad at the hospital
                        -Realizing that there are 2 other family practitioners who just arrived as well at
                        -Realizing that a majority of my patients are likely going to speak Quechau

            All of these things can be summarized into a couple different fears:
-          Fear of wasted time
-          Fear of wasted/spent money
-          Fear of not being needed
-          Fear of not reaching my full potential

            Truths that negate each fear:
                        -God brought/called me here
                        - If I’m focusing on being His light, loving/knowing people, and maturing
                                    relationships, no time/opportunity/or moment is wasted.
                        - Every taxi ride all over tarnations lends itself as an opportunity to share the truth
                                    and love of God with all those I’m “forced” to meet.  Plus they can teach
                                    me a lot about the culture and serve as language lessons as a talk with
                                    them during the ride.
                        -America is a culture of “hurry up and wait”à why not just trust God with timing
                                    and focus on the role/responsibility he has given meà get to know people,
                                    love people, speak the truth of Christ into their lives.
                        - Up until this point God has always known better than I on how to best prepare
                                    me for what he has prepared for me to do in the future (going to In His
                                    Image for residency is a great example. I didn’t want to go to this
                                    residency program but I trusted God, and I ended up not only loving it  
                                    and the people there, but also realizing that everything I thought was
                                    important in my preparation wasn’t, and the things that ended up being
                                    most important I wasn’t even aware of). à why should that change now?
                        -God owns all the money in the whole world.  And the value to God of even one
                                    lost child turning back to Him is priceless.
                        -The more money I’m forced to spend on red tape/and every imaginable fee
                                    known to man, the more my brothers and sisters in Christ are going to
                                    grow in their intimacy and dependence on Him as they give more and
                                    more of what He’s given them first (whether little or much).
                        -I’m NOT needed.  But I’m precious and loved by God, and it gives Him great joy
                                    to use me to build His kingdom.

Unexpected blessings:
-          My taxi driver spoke at length with me as we drove all over town.  We talked about everything, even religion/faith, and he said my Spanish was “good” [meaning “understandable”---though he did proceed to correct me from time to time and help me with words when I got stuck.  I felt like I was playing Taboo all day trying to get him to say words I was looking for and had either forgotten or hadn’t ever known.]
-          4 other Americans [Stephen (a dentist) and his wife Finley (a social worker) and their son Matteo (10 months and a walking ball of energy), and Nolan (Stephen’s brother and a physical therapist) and his wife Conica) arrived at the guest house who are going through the same visa process I’m going through, and are actually exactly one step ahead of me and 2 of them had already made every single mistake you could have possibly made.  So they were able to tell me what to do next and what not to do.  They all arrived at the guest house and were introduced to me at exactly my lowest point when I didn’t know what to do next, I couldn’t call anyone and felt hopelessly lost.  Basically they told me there was nothing more that I could do at this point, so I just relaxed and enjoyed the rest of my time in Lima.
-          After talking with the Americans I realized that they all have strengths (ie are actively involved in discipleship work already in Curahuasi) that are my weaknesses and I’m excited to learn from their examples---which is they way I learn best. 

1 comment:

  1. Press on Ari! You Are so very precious and loved by God. We are thinking and praying for you!