Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Brazilians have no sense of time. In every house either there is no clock or a broken one. Steve had to travel to São Paulo to find the "Only Working Clock in Brazil"
Second bater laje for Wellington
Kyle is so happy!
My mind is a confusing place

Wednesday, September 16

I was taking loads of sand up the hill for wellington and I was thinking about being humble. I had just read in Acts that Peter healed a crippled beggar and credited everything to God. I cried out for this kind of humility. I realized that if God won’t tempt us beyond what we can bear, why would he give us power beyond what we can handle. He knows our hearts; whether we will take all the credit for a good deed or give the glory to him. In order to do what God wants and be great servants of Christ, we must first have the humility and give God what he deserves; everything that we do good is from the creator and everything bad is from our own weakness.

I’m just starting to read Till We Have Faces by C.S. Lewis and it is exquisite. It makes me feel good to know that I’m getting the symbolism of a man so great and intelligent. Written, I believe, as a personal testimony, I understand the struggle he went through believing in God. Either it is really C.S. Lewis’ testimony disguised as a Greek myth or he’s an excellent, excellent writer, or both.

Monday September 21

James, Steve, and I were hanging out together talking about philosophy and theology like normal (when were not philosophizing we’re watching comedy routines on youtube), and the college subject arose. We concluded that the majority of college students won’t get a job based on their degree. All they have is a piece of paper stating that they studied about something that they won’t use ever again. Yet many things happen in an adults life during college, many of those things affecting them negatively. Though they may not realize it then, most college students end college worse and with less direction than when they started. This subject quickly turned to the topic of success. Who is a successful person? What makes them successful? “Success” is a relative term for everyone. For some it may mean wealth. In the United States, you could be a drug addict, an adulterer, or 50 Cent and still be considered successful if you’re rich. However for Christians, I’ve realized, being successful means obedience to God. Some people may think, “Wow. What a tool.” (the word “tool” of course meaning someone who is used by others and blindly submits to authority) The truth is Christians do have free will and the ability to question authority, although it is the authority of the one true God who created us and loves us to an unimaginable degree. If one had the conviction that this God exists through His appearance in their lives, how could he deny Him? The Padley’s testimony is proof of how obedience, though without support or a clear direction for 10 years, will always reap rewards. James tells me how genuinely content he is with his life. He lives in adventure everyday, has amazing kids, the chance to bless people everyday, and a priceless wife. Though he struggles to keep his car every month and put food on the table, God always provides. He is happy with his life and it is a direct result of his obedience to God. Divine authority over man’s authority. In my eyes and God’s eyes James is successful. A man who lives in a trailer, yet is a man after God’s heart is successful. I can only hope that when I ascend to heaven that God says to me, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”

Yesterday a group of us climbed Elephant Mountain. Normally, waking up at five in the morning and walking an hour and a half to the base of a giant hill, climbing it for another hour, then going down and back, doesn’t sound fun. This time it was. Later in the day a school had a pie fund-raiser. All the students made a different pie and I could eat as much as I wanted for 5 reis (equivalent to about $2.63). It was glorious.

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