Not knowing exactly what you will need when you get there, or what you might need before the shipment arrives, how do you know what to pack, what to store, what to keep, and what to get rid of?
Well, I'm sure there will be moments in which I smack my forehead in dismay saying, "Why did I pack this junk?" followed by groans of "Why didn't I keep or pack such and such?" Nevertheless, I am very eager for our 32 boxes to arrive. In them we have some household items, some sentimental things, clothes in the next few sizes for Eliana, some toys for Eliana and lots of books for Daniel's library. It has been an ordeal to ship the things here. In fact, we know of some missionaries who were headed to S.A. (South Africa) and their shipment ended up HERE in Colombia, S.A. (South America)! Somebody really should figure out how to re-label the two "continent/countries" without such confusion! Our stuff almost went to South Africa, but we were able to correct that mistake before it shipped.
Apparently the government was planning to impose some new tax on the truck drivers, so the drivers all banded together and went on strike. From what I understand, the strike was in the whole country of Colombia. Here in Bogota on Highway 80, they abused their permission to demonstrate peacefully and created a traffic block with their trucks across the highway! From what I heard, nearly 50 drivers were arrested. One driver who refused to join the strike was pulled from his truck after the protesters had set it on fire. He was badly burned.
So our stuff has been waiting in Cartagena for the strike to lift so that it can be transported here by truck.
I can't express to you how it feels to live here - in a country where the people seem to have so much power. I know the US is a democracy in which the people have "power," but this is a raw, lawless "power" that is frightening. I never realized how safe and secure I felt in the states... and I know I haven't experienced anything that others have. I haven't been in my home when robbers entered. I haven't had a gun pointed to my head. I haven't had a loved one kidnapped or killed. But these things have all happened to missionaries here. I took for granted that the deadbolt on my US apartment was enough to deter theives. I even left it unlocked several times by accident! I took for granted that the police would maintain the peace in my neighborhood and that the armed forces would keep my country safe.
I find myself reminded that no matter where I am, only my God can truly be my source of security. No person or government or system of public protection can be my security. But God is so much more! He is ultimate security. I do face a lot of fear here, but as I deal with it daily and as I learn to venture out in His strength and protection, I remind myself:
Isa 26:3 Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.
Psa 18:2 The LORD is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower.
Psa 56:3 What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee.
Psa 56:11 In God have I put my trust: I will not be afraid what man can do unto me.