Mom left today on the 3:55 flight to Lima. I haven't heard anything yet, so I'm assuming she made it safely there. She is staying overnight and leaving at 7:50 am to return to Greensboro. I'm sad to have her go. I expect the next few days will feel lonely before I again get used to the idea that Tim and I are here on our own. I guess one thing I have learned is that loneliness provides an opportunity to grow in intimacy with God. When I feel alone, it's because I'm living with limited vision and forgetting His presence.
I still intend to give a report of our trip when I have a chance to breathe, but for now I want to mention one thing that impacted me during the last two weeks. It didn't hit home until I was reading my Bible on the plane yesterday and came across Jesus' criticism of the Pharisees in Matthew 23: Everything they do is done for men to see.... [but] whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted. All of the sudden I was acutely aware of my desire over the last two weeks to convince everyone around me that I am not a tourist. I'm too embarrassed to explain all the ways I have attempted to do so, so let it suffice that I have clearly been counting on the wrong things to lend me value and self-worth. What is so intrinsically valuable about not being a tourist? Why would the fact that I speak Spanish make me immediately more than someone else?
To know my value as a daughter of God is to find a peace that sets me free from self-exaltation. How I long for that kind of confidence and security.... The truth is that I can't drum it up for myself. The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, humility, and self-control. Galatians 5:22-23