Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Our Last Days in Costa Rica

Even though we have been home for a couple of days now, I still want to share our last 2 days in Costa Rica with you.

Early Friday morning, we said goodbye to our Villa and headed to the beach.

This is one of the boys' rooms (in part)

This is the gate to the Villa
Here's the front of the Villa
No question about who let the dogs out here!  Two huge German Shepherds were let out each night at 10:30 p.m.
We said goodbye to Terry, one of our translators
She wasn't able to go to the beach with us.  Instead, she stayed behind and cleaned our rooms.  Talk about taking care of His sheep!  Humbling.
During our 2+ hour drive to the beach, nearly everyone was asleep until Johnny yelled, "Hey, there's Kevin on that bus!"  Kevin was the young man from the Christian orphanage with braces on his legs.  So, everyone wakes up and gets all excited.  We were waving at the kids on the other bus.  Several folks were looking for JoJo!  Then, the realization hit that it was NOT Kevin on that bus or anyone else we had met!  Our bus erupts in laughter!  But Johnny is still convinced it was Kevin :)
A little later, our bus stops and we walk across this bridge to see...
these enormous crocodiles!  They were huge!

After we left the crocodiles, we saw a parrot flying in the wild!  It was really neat. 
About 10 minutes past the crocodiles, we turned onto the road that led us to the beach. Kylie didn't think we had gone far enough away from the crocodiles to be getting in the ocean! When we arrived at the beach, here is what greeted us...
The beach was in the middle of the jungle!!!  I prayed real hard not to see a snake!

Here's David seeking shade. 
The temperature went up quite a bit at the beach compared to what we had been used to all week in San Jose.
Here are our young ladies hanging out on the beach
And jumping for JOY!

Now we older wiser ladies couldn't be out done!

There was a waterfall on the beach, along with lots of rocks. 
Danielle turned it into a water slide!

Check out Tyler's new pet crab or is that lunch?
And speaking of lunch, every meal here was a huge buffet!
The restaurant was open to the jungle.  It had no walls.  So lots of God's creatures joined us for our meals (pictures of that are below.)
Tanner and Buck are hanging out on the deck of their room.
Todd was looking a bit too dry so Jeff is helping his friend out!

But don't think for one minute that we stopped ministering or sharing the Gospel just because we were having fun at the beach.  Several folks heard about Jesus while we were there and at the airport too.  Only our setting changed because our mission remained the same. 

These pictures do not do this tree justice.  It is gorgeous and over 400 years old.  God's creation is amazing!

After dinner, we had some group time where we praised God for all He had done in Costa Rica and thanked Him for letting us be a part of it all.  Then, we wrote letters to ourselves regarding what we thought we would be doing in 3 years, how what God did in Costa Rica would be impacting our lives in 3 years, and who has had the most influence in our lives thus far.  Afterwards, we shared with our small groups.  It was very touching and powerful.  Matt & Johnny plan to send us our letters in 3 years.  It will be interesting to see what God is doing in our lives at that time.
Just before bedtime, a few brave folks decided to check out karaoke (in spanish of course!)

Sorry, I left before the real singing got started!  You will have to ask CG or Buck about it.  I was only there for the dancing.
Check out the monkey.  He was in a tree near our breakfast table at the restaurant.  The monkeys apparently come out every morning.
Here are the other creatures (a mix between a racoon & an ant eater) having breakfast with Johnny and Matt.  These little furry fellows traveled in packs. 
Here's CG the animal tamer!!!
There were lots and lots of monkeys - EVERYWHERE! 
This one is grabbing a banana.
This one was a little shy and couldn't decide if he could trust us or not.  He did eventually grab himself a banana too.
Ahhhh, how sweet! Three little friends sitting in a row....
You can take us out of York County, but you can't take York County out of us! Check out our camouflage and Harley bags!
Bonding time at the airport.

And nap time too!

God is so good!  He is so faithful!  He is so very real!  We are still praising Him for all that He did in Costa Rica.  He changed hearts.  He changed lives.  He drew us closer to Himself and to each other.  And we are so grateful that we will never be the same.

"I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened
in order that you may know the hope to which He has called you..."
Ephesians 1:18

Loving HIM with all my heart & soul,

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