Faithfulness in a Motocar

Today I went downtown with Mami Rosy and Papa Jacinto to go grocery shopping. Now, unlike at home when Mom and I hop in the car, drive to WalMart, throw our stuff in a cart, and drive home… grocery shopping here is a bit of an excursion. We had to hail a motocar, drive 20 minutes to downtown Pucallpa, then go to each store separately – the baking goods store, the meat store, the sugar store (which differs somehow from the baking goods store), etc.

It was on this 20 minute motocar drive that I, sandwiched between Mami and Papa, spent some time talking to Jesus. Those closest to me already know that this first week in Pucallpa has been a difficult one. I’ve been battling fatigue, culture shock, homesickness, and the language barrier – all while sweating profusely. My mind and heart have been in a bizarre battle of nostalgia and sheer happiness, and it has all been very taxing.

As we’re riding, I’m thinking about Hiawatha. Today is the day that the staff heads north to begin training and meetings, and I find myself missing the place where I spent every summer until last year. As my mind drifts, I remember the post I wrote a few weeks ago about Christ being my only constant.

And then He bops me gently upside the head and says, “Helloooo? Has that suddenly changed just because you’re on a different continent? Do you think I don’t see you? Do you think I’m someone different here than in the US?”

As I gaze at the wooden buildings with their hand-painted signs, a peace begins to wash over me. Of course nothing has changed. Of COURSE Christ is still faithful and constant and unchanging and true and all of those things. Of course He knows where I am, what I’m going through, and what I will become. He sees my weaknesses, rejoices with me in my joys, and chuckles when I make humorous grammar mistakes. He is the same God in Pucallpa that He is in Chicago that He is in Millington that He is in Eckerman that He is everywhere.  His promises have not changed just because they’re in Spanish here.

As I mull this over with growing peace in my heart, we pass the sign that says, “Jesucristo is el Senor de Pucallpa” (Jesus Christ is Lord of Pucallpa). In a throwback to my years at Lutheran school, my heart cries out, “This is most certainly true.”

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One thought on “Faithfulness in a Motocar

  1. Nana says:

    Oh, Alyssa, I am so sorry that you are going through all of the discomforts that you described in this message. We have been praying for you & trust that you are becoming more adjusted to the culture & language. My heart goes out to you when you say you are homesick. Here is a great big hug from Papa & me.

    I am caring for Avery today. Last evening, Kendra dropped Ian & Avery off while they went to visit friends in the trailer park across from the chapel. Since Gun Lake had their fireworks last evening we watched fireworks on the deck. The children really enjoyed them. Avery was talking about the “colors” of the different ones.

    After Ian went home, Avery wanted to sleep in the big bed. I assumed that she meant my bed, but it was the one on the floor at the foot of my bed that was the “big bed.”

    We are having fun today staying cool inside. It has been forcasted to be another week in the low 90’s. I know that may seem cool to you, but it is a bit warm to us.

    Keeping you in our prayer,
    Lovingly,
    Nana

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