International Ministries

Gifts of Grace: Memorial Park Complete!

March 27, 2014 Journal
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Last month I shared how people in many places were “echando raices”, putting down roots, in me, making my heart and world bigger. As I process this last trip to Costa Rica and prepare to head to Bolivia next week, I offer you some of the tender moments of grace and unexpected blessings experienced for which I am immensely grateful to God. -Mylinda 

*Flying in and out of Seattle gives me the chance to sup with our daughter, fill her gas tank, and hear about her studies, her students and her soul. The gift of time spent together: a treasure. 

 *Receiving a handmade purple and green rubber band bracelet from my 8-year-old friend Joel and then proudly wearing it to church with my pink and black flowered dress. The gift of grateful generosity: a magical motivator

 *Sharing table with the Vindas family whose kindness and creativity, commitment to Christ bless me. Our conversations about unemployment and disappointment reminded me of God’s faithfulness and unbounded hope in seemingly hopeless situations. The gift of faith: a saving salve. 

 *Waiting all week for the playground to be released from customs with all of the emotional highs and lows that came with hopeful news then disappointing delays. Each extra day of waiting brought new opportunities for deepening relationships and trusting in God’s timing not our own. The gift of waiting: an uninvited, but invaluable teacher. 

 *Communicating with Aziel who helped us navigate the customs system and worked diligently on our behalf even though he was not ultimately contracted by the sending organization. His integrity, honesty and humility were evident throughout the process. The gift of truth: a guiding light on a challenging path. 

*Translating a sacred conversation for my sister DeDe and my friend Nancy, both bravely grieving the loss of a child and sharing a story of parenting surviving children. Through tender tears and heart wrenching honesty, a fierce friendship was formed despite language and distance barriers. I was humbled to be a part of making it possible. The gift of grief: a humbling harbinger of hope. 

 *Watching parents, children, and friends enjoying the memorial park as it was intended: a long-term investment in the lives of children and adults to provide a safe place to grow and dream. As we strengthen healthy relational connections through education, art, worship and play we can prevent many of the risk factors inherent in trafficking situations. The gift of play: an imaginative initiative. 

 * Laughing with abandon on a number of occasions ranging from embarrassing language foibles, treacherous traffic, exhausted late night silliness and spontaneous multi-generational games played both without and on a new playground. The gift of joy: a sweet healing nectar bubbling up, out and overflowing. 

 "The Word became flesh and blood, and moved into the neighborhood. We saw the glory with our own eyes, the one-of-a-kind glory, Generous inside and out, true from start to finish."                            John 1:14-The Message