Visiting the open air market, known here as "El Mayoreo" was another first. Stand after stand of vegetables, eggs, fruit, and dry goods at incredibly reasonable prices which helps to make up for the $5/ gallon of milk and other high prices in the grocery store. I am looking forward to my first papaya shake.
Phillip and Rachelle are great to take along to the market to help carry all the bags of produce, but if they can't make it, I'll just get one of the boys that pushes a wooden wheelbarrow cart to help me with my purchases.
Juicing fresh oranges is also a first. They are in season, which means they are sweet and juicy, plentiful and cheap. I took advantage of some available man power to do the squeezing.
We all enjoyed the finished product. Especially me, since it's hard to find 100% fruit juice here in the stores. It seems like it all has sugar added.
- Some more "firsts" include trying to find our way around the city only to end up back where we started. :) We are improving as time goes on, so that gives us hope of learning to navigate in this crazy, busy city.
- Phillip's first missionary project for Michael Miller was putting together a shelving unit to store and organize donations.
Other "firsts" are downright negative. Like the cockroach on our white shower curtain that was at least 2 inches long with antennae twice as long as his body that twitched 12 hours after David killed him. These are the most disgusting bugs ever. But in my Pollyanna Glad Game I am thankful that this first didn't happen until the 9th day into our visit. Thankfully, there are enough positives to outweigh the negatives!
Yet another "first" was one I have been waiting for. Shortly after we arrived, my Bible reading happened to be about the rich man and Lazarus from Luke 16:19-31. This parable tells the story of a beggar named Lazarus who was laid at the rich man's gate. Lazarus suffered terribly with sores covering his body that the dogs would lick. When Lazarus died, he joined Abraham in heaven. These two men have become heroes of mine. It shows that there is justice in the end, even when the earth is so full of injustice now. The rich man in the story ends up tormented in hell after he dies, longing for just a drop of cool water on his tongue from Lazarus' hand. The great chasm between the two of them prevents any help. It's not a happy ending for the rich man who lives selfishly for himself, not noticing the needs around him. Is there a way that we can help ease the suffering around us, so that we can have a happy ending? I know that I am rich, especially when I look around this country. I also serve an amazing God who has given me eternal riches that I want to share. This morning a beggar knocked at our gate giving us an opportunity to practice what we have read in God's Word.
Blessed is he who is kind to the needy. Proverbs 14:21b
Whoever is kind to the needy honors God. Proverbs 14: 31b