What an incredible first day we had today on our mission trip in Costa Rica. It was a busy day, and a day filled with our eyes and hearts being witness to the beauty of God‘s creation.
First of all, I spent my morning quiet time in a much different way than normal. At home, I’m usually just sitting at the kitchen table eating breakfast, praying and reading the bible. Pretty ordinary. But this morning, I decided that the back patio looked like a good place, so I sat out there praying, reading, drinking a cup of coffee (Costa Rican coffee, by the way, good stuff!), taking in some morning sun and the surrounding scenery. As I was finishing up and just kind of looking around, I saw two of the biggest green Macaw’s that I’ve ever seen at the top of this huge tree just a little ways off. They were amazing looking. I’m not one to normally care too much about the birds around me, but the beauty of these two was awesome.
After breakfast we headed out, walking to the Hogar de Vida Orphanage, which is not too far away. As we walked there, we were greeted with the unbelievable beauty of the surrounding country side. Being that we arrived on Sunday night, and it was already dark, we weren’t able to see any of the surrounding area. But, this morning, there it was. It was as if God, said, “Ha, see what I can do?”. The mountains, the rain forest, and everything around us was breathtaking. We weren’t in Texas anymore.
Soon we arrived at Hogar de Vida Orphanage and were greeted by the director, and then led down to a covered pavilion where the children, staff and other volunteers were gathered. Steve led us all in a time of devotion where he talked to the children about how we always hear so many stories about Jesus and what he did while here on earth, but you don’t hear as many stories about what Jesus is doing now. So what is he doing now? I’ll let you think about that one. It was a great time of hearing the Word and prayer.
What God revealed to me there though, was that there was more beauty to behold. The beauty of the hearts of each worker, staff member, volunteer, and of course the beauty of each of the kids, and the smiles that were on their faces. Even in the circumstances that they were in, they smiled, they laughed and played. And as I looked around, I saw the beauty of my own two kids there with me, as my oldest daughter talked to the different kids and my oldest son kicked the soccer ball around with some of them. This place was a true testament to God’s people, sacrificing everything, to care for and love on these little kids.
Mark 9:37 – Whoever welcomes one of these little children in my name welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me does not welcome me but the one who sent me.
Later, in the afternoon we went to a place called Zoo Ave, which is basically a zoo with many of the indigenous animals to Costa Rica. Once again, God had the beauty of His creation on display. We saw many animals none of us have ever seen. Huge Iguana’s roaming free on the paths along with peacocks. All kinds of monkeys swinging from the trees (they were not roaming free). Species of birds that I’ve only heard of on Animal Planet. It was an unbelievable array.
It was a great first day. A day that God decided He was going to show us all kinds of beauty. The beauty of his creation from the landscape and countryside, to the animals of Costa Rica and the beauty of all of those He created in His image from the staff and workers at Hogar de Vida, my own kids, and yes without a doubt, those precious little kids that call Hogar de Vida home.
Romans 1:20 – For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.