Everything here requires me to trust God. Trust that, although the walls of the house do not meet the roof, some animal is not going to come into the house or my room in the middle of the night. Trust that there is not going to be some natural disaster since they feel more common here than they do at home. Trust when we are out and about that, although we automatically call attention to ourselves, that we will remain safe. That I am not going to come down sick.
And yet I can see in many of these areas where God has grown me. Two years ago, I did not want to visit this country for a week long mission trip (instead was going out of obedience), and never would have believed that I would want to live here for an extended period such as this. A year and a half ago, although I fell in love with Nicaragua while here, I was on the lookout everywhere I went for anything I was afraid of (and boy was there a list).
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation.The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” 2 Corinthians 5:17
I have learned that when the kids are playing in the faucets outside, it sounds like hissing in my room. I have learned the sound of a cat jumping on the tin roof in the middle of the night, or a bird walking across it for that matter. I am no longer startled when I see a gecko crawling up the wall. I wasn’t even very startled when I saw a cockroach in the bathroom (slightly grossed out….which is progress for me I assure you). I wasn’t thrilled with seeing a dead gecko laying on my mosquito net on my bed, but it didn’t send me screaming in the opposite direction (baby steps…). Even going to the zoo was really an example of growth for me, as this was not a zoo up to American standards. I was thankful that our driver warned me of the area where I would want to cover my eyes.
I have to trust Him, because the alternative is to drive myself crazy. But I also know that is partly why He has me here. It becomes easy to trust Him at home, among the familiar, but here every facet of life requires me to depend on Him. Some days it is exhausting, other days I love it. Some days the enemy has a field day using every sound or fear, other days are peaceful. In either scenario, I am holding tight to Him.
“I lift up my eyes to the hills.
From where does my help come?
My help comes from the Lord,
who made heaven and earth.
He will not let your foot be moved;
he who keeps you will not slumber.
Behold, he who keeps Israel
will neither slumber nor sleep.
The Lord is your keeper;
the Lord is your shade on your right hand.
The sun shall not strike you by day,
nor the moon by night.
The Lord will keep you from all evil;
he will keep your life.
The Lord will keep
your going out and your coming in
from this time forth and forevermore.” Psalm 121