I'm 30! First of all, I can't even tell you how awesome it is to celebrate your birthday in Bolivia. All day the kids called me "viejo" which I believe loosely translates to young, strong and handsome. Gracias amigos! I was also introduced to the sacred Bolivian tradition of "taking a bite out of the side of the cake." And on top of that I got to dig ditches all day!!!
Last night was the last night of my 20's. As I lay in bed I started the cliche "what the heck have I done with my life" conversation with myself. I started to get really anxious...what have I accomplished? What did I let slip away? Which turns we're right, which were wrong? Am I on the right path? Where did 29 years go? Somewhere in the chaos of my thought process, Dave's sermon from last week popped into my head. I AM NOT THE PROTAGONIST. I started chanting it like a mantra in my head. Instantly God changed my inward conversation from "what have I done?" to "what has He done?" I was so overwhelmed by the amount of memories I had of seeing God work throughout my life, and my anxiety had no choice but to transform into gratitude.
I AM NOT THE PROTAGONIST was a strange mantra to take into the work day today. It's so easy to see yourself as the hero here. I brought money, I can sing and I can lift heavy things right over my head! But none of that matters here. God matters here. Nothing brought me to that realization more than the birthday card I received from Pastor Hugo. Did he thank me for lifting bricks and shoveling dirt? Nope. Was the card about my willingness and sacrifice to come to Bolivia? Nope. He simply said his heart was so happy that I sing and play for God and had a verse written in English:
"Arise, shine; for your light has come. And the glory of the Lord has risen upon you." I AM NOT THE PROTAGONIST.
Seriously, I can't even tell you how awesome it is to celebrate your birthday in Bolivia.
Eric with his special birthday cake:
ON DAY 4 WE...
Ate breakfast chicken Salteñas.
Cuddled sleeping babies.
Became wire benders and cutters. That's the official term.
Hauled away more debris.
Were served delicious lasagna, bread and salad for lunch.
Celebrated Eric's 30th birthday. The Bolivians loved celebrating "Eh-Deek" (how they pronounce Eric) today!
Ended the work day with wheelbarrow races in the street.
Jumped on a bus to go back to the hotel for dinner and a quick nap if you were lucky.
Returned to the church for a small service.
Cory preached and Morena translated. Don't worry Morena padded his jokes so he could be funny in Spanish.
Walked to La Cancha for volleyball and soccer.
Played, cheered and laughed a lot.
It was a late night but a great night.
Sun, July 22, 2012
by Steph Villa Davis filed under