The month of April was sandwiched by two lovely visits from Australia – a few days with my parents at the beginning, and with a couple of friends at the end. But somehow in between and even during that time I was struggling (see part 1).
Last Friday an unexpected timetable swap at El Sendero meant a later start for me, so even though it wasn’t really a lot of extra time, I was feeling like I really needed to get out of Loja. So I went to Vilcabamba for the day with J, and we had a good time. But truth be told, I didn’t come back feeling that much better.
On Sunday I made a semi-spontaneous trip to Gonzanamá to see the annual corrida de toros (bullfight). I got to catch up with a number of people, I enjoyed the event (let’s leave the pros and cons of bullfighting for another time!), and I think I did come back in a much better mood that night.
I woke up on Monday morning and pretty much decided I wasn’t going to be down about stuff anymore. I gave thanks to God for everything, for His many blessings upon my life.
Nothing’s really changed at Sendero, or with youth ministry at church – both of those things continue to be challenging, and seeming monoliths incapable of any, let alone swift, change – but I am much more positive about everything in general. Which in turn has allowed me to support and encourage others more. This is something I knew I needed to do with D and S, but had always found difficult. I prayed twice with S this week, and know that meant a lot to her. There were other times in the past that I could see she wasn’t okay, but didn’t know what to do, because I wasn’t feeling up to praying with her. Which sounds stupid I know – when you’re weak, that’s when you most need to get on your knees, right?
And that’s what I’d done somewhere along the line on the weekend. I had a ridiculous lapse of judgment on Friday, and it’s like repenting and feeling bad about my stupidity helped me in some way. It was a reminder of my weakness, of how much I need Him, and how easy it is to slip into a routine of not depending on Him wholeheartedly, the way we’re supposed to.
God is good.