Tuesday, July 26, 2011

So thankful.

I am so thankful to be here.

So thankful that the second I stepped off the plane in La Paz (still one flight away from my beloved Coch), I almost started crying because it smelled like Bolivia.

So thankful the staff brought this girl to the airport with them when they picked me up- she's graduated from the program but they'd told her I was coming.
When we got back to the house, she and I sat down at the dining room table and talked, deep talked, for over an hour- about what she's been learning, about her baptism last year (she beamed as she told me about it), about what she misses about the house since she graduated and how it changed her life, about our memories from my time here.
In my opinion if I had had that conversation and turned and headed back to the States, it would have been worth the trip.

So thankful for how insanely easy it has felt to step back into relationships here. For the inside jokes we all started tossing around instantly, for the affection and laughter and mutual gratitude exchanged.

So thankful for the conversations I've already gotten to have with the staff.

So thankful to get to hug and know a new group of girls.

So thankful for how much more fun it is to be here with Spanish and self-confidence.

So thankful and genuinely surprised by how completely natural it feels to be here. A year and a half is a decently long time, but the most surreal part so far has been how not surreal it feels. The streets, the cafés, the fresh fruit sold on the corners, the people's mannerisms, the house, the Albergue schedule, all feel so familiar. I remember more than I thought I did.

So thankful the waitress at my favorite café RECOGNIZED ME IMMEDIATELY!! I left here 19 months ago!! That rocked.
And thankful to have sat in that café once again at the quiet table in the corner on the second floor, where I found my sanity so many mornings those six months.

So thankful to get to see my mountains in every direction.

So thankful and THRILLED (and not surprised at all) to see how amazing Lauren is doing here, how much the girls and staff love her and that I can see her falling in love with Mosoj Yan and its work and its girls. So thankful I get to see her HNGR journey up close.

So thankful to have stayed up two late nights talking with Lindsay. So thankful for how natural living Cochabamba life with her, even briefly, feels. So thankful to get to mutually externally process with her; so grateful to see her belly and squeal over kicks and celebrate upcoming parenthood.

Praying so hard to be an encouragement to the people I'm interacting with here. The staff, the girls, Lauren, Lindsay, my host parents.

There have been hard things, too.
I don't want to trivialize them by throwing them into a quickly-written list.
The joy is richer than I remembered,
but the darkness is just as dark.

But I am deeply, deeply thankful to be here.
To be a part of this work again, even if only briefly.
 To be praying over this work, these girls, this suffering, from here.

Every night when I've gone to bed and tried to start praying, all I can do is thank Him over and over for letting me come back.

More to come...


Asharae said...

Beautiful beautiful beautiful. I'm so grateful you're back in Bolivia even for a short time. We'll be waiting with open arms to hug you when you get here :)

Marissa said...

This is so wonderful and beautiful, much like you :-). I love reading your e-mails and this post--feels like we're having coffee or hanging out in the park :-). Praying for you. Love you so, so, so much!

merey kay said...

emily! hurray! so glad it's going well. okay, now come back and be my friend. i'm self-centered like this. but really, please keep having a great time. and i'm praying for you.

Anonymous said...

So proud to be your Dad!

Human Needs Global Resources Covenant, 2009

As fellow travelers on this journey, we commit to this covenant before God. Lord, in Your mercy, hear these our prayers:

When confronted with scarcity, need, and inadequacy, may we be nourished by the Bread of Life and the Cup of Salvation. Abundance overflows from Your table, sustaining all who come in faith. Father, help us.

When monotony blurs our vision and dulls our senses, may we encounter others as Christ did, through intentional presence in daily life, submitting as clay to be formed into vessels filled with the Spirit. Christ, guide us.

When wounded by the fractured condition of Your people, may we be united by Your Lordship in faith, hope, and love; seeing, as through the facets of a diamond, the beautiful spectrum of Your light reflected onto Your holy Church joined in praise. Spirit, empower us.

When all Creation groans, afflicted by injustice and driven to despair, may the promise of redemption root us in the hope of Your Kingdom: "Behold, I am making all things new!"

Holy Trinity, send us now into the world in peace, and grant us strength and courage to love and serve You with gladness and singleness of heart.