I have celebrated my first month here in Costa Rica last Friday and celebrated it with my host family in a nearby Seafood Restaurant. Praise God for having a family here who is very happy to have me in their home for a month already. But unfortunately, I am not.
You see, my partner and I should be in our mission area right now, which is Panama. We’re supposed to have started the work there, have supposed built relationships with the people there, have supposed… But no, we’re still here in Costa Rica and will be staying here for a few weeks more because our visas have no assurance when it would be released.
Sometimes, I ask God during my prayer time why is this happening; why is it so difficult to get our papers processed for Panama; why do I have to wait this long when I know we could have started our work and do more there. But every time, He just says to me “Be still my child, for I have taken care of everything.”
But still, I am frustrated. So I directed this frustration in just being productive here in Costa Rica. I have helped in the activities for the JPC and SPC and built relationships with them. I have been tapped to serve and share my life (in pure Spanish!) in two PVCs (CLP) of the MPC here; I also taught the children of the participants and service team (as I baby-sit them) in the PVC in Puntarenas the song “Abri Mis Ojos Señor” (Open the eyes of my heart Lord) with actions, then the kids presented to the whole group after (and everyone were delighted because they sang and danced well!).
As I looked back on my first month here, I realized that God has used me so much even though at times, I questioned Him. Remembering the times that He has used me here affirms me that sometimes, I need to wait, not because He wants me to suffer but because He needs to use me in different ways for me to be ready for my next mission. This realization was also affirmed by some participants after my sharing last Saturday, that God wants me to be here in Costa Rica to share my life to them so that they’ll have a new life in Christ.
It has been more than a month since I came here. But I’m not anxious anymore. I am more excited now, more excited than I left the Philippines, because I know that God has already taken care of everything. All He is asking me is to press on with my life and move forward as I wait patiently and actively for His plans to take place. I know and believe that our papers are already in process and He will just surprise us one day with it when we least expect it. Right now, all I could do is to praise God for the waiting period, for allowing me to grow and be of use while I am here. I praise Him for the new friends and families that I have here, people that I could count on in times of need (especially when I want pollo frito-fried chicken!ü). And I praise Him for being so big, for being so great and amazing, that all I could do is just praise Him for His unending surprises He’s giving me every moment.
As I see pictures of Panama and hearing stories about it and the people, I can’t help but be more excited to go to our Promised Land. I know that God has already prepared Panama for us – the families we’re going to stay there with, the community especially the people that we need to evangelize, and our work there. All He’s telling us is to wait for His plans and see His glory to unfold right before our eyes.
As one of the prayers of a good friend before, “Lord, kung kelangan ko pong pagdaanan ang hirap at sakit na ito, para lang matupad ang plano mo, sige po, kakayanin ko” (Lord, if I need to go through these pains and hardships just for Your plans to be fulfilled, I will endure it), I pray this prayer as I face this lamenting period of my life so God can use this suffering for His greater glory.
¡Con esto, puede Dios ser elogiado! (With that, May God be praised!)