I'm in the process of processing my trip. Over most of the tired jet lag, and almost on the right time zone again, and my GI system seems almost back on track and caught up from the varying parasites, Montezumas, cochabambas I caught while there. It's hard to respond to a quick, "how was your trip?", when there is so much that fills my mind and heart. I woke up in the night the first 4 nights in a row thinking I was still in the salt desert and searching for my flashlight. Thanks Hubby for re-orienting me. It changes your perspective on a lot of things, and makes me more appreciative of so many things. Switching from such a relational culture and close team unity, back to our high speed one, is also a real mind shift. Expected, but missing the "family" that we have there.
One of the girls that I met during my time in Bolivia, came up.... well down ..... from La Paz to translate for us so we could talk with our patients(thank you!!). She works for an organization called "Word Made Flesh" that helps women to get out of prostitution, to get skills and receive counselling and make a new life for themselves. They often give themselves a new name to start their life over again. The young women sew these amazing purses, bags and wallets to support themselves. Ali brought some down to where we were staying and they sold like hot cakes. Check 'em out Sutisana and buy something! They are beautiful and very well made.... worth the hope they are providing to these women. Loving my "carnival envelope clutch" the perfect size for an i-pad (which I guess I need to get now).
I had the privilege of staying with Ali at the end of my trip when I spend a couple days in La Paz and was amazed by her heart, the ministry, and the city. She goes right into brothels to talk with the women and the teams go out at night to where the women are to meet with them and be that one WORD, that encouraging voice, a bit of love in the worlds they see night after night.
We live such privileged lives in North America, even though we are wrought with our own different, and sometimes the same problems, we often have resources, knowledge or can find support systems. I am so amazed that someone would give up an engineering career to go and serve on the dusty, cold and dry streets of this big and amazing city. To have to boil water to drink everyday, to live without a lot of conveniences, to not have a hot shower anytime you feel like it, to live without central heating, and not have street signs to know where you live or help strangers from Canada find where you live.... (that other time we got lost in La Paz at night). Thank you Ali and friends!!! For making a difference where you are!
Makes us want to make a difference in our spheres of influence too!