Ever-Present Grace

Sometimes it seems like nothing is easy here.

Yesterday we went to buy a DVD player.  We couldn’t just take it off the shelf and head to the cash register because we had to wait for a salesman to come and sign it over to us.  We were ignored by the first salesman, but eventually another man walked over to us and put the code number and price on a piece of paper; he then sent us to the cashier.  Although we were first in line, we waited ten minutes for the cash register to be cleared of information from the previous customer’s faulty credit card.  When the cashier finally scanned the bar code of the DVD player, it did not match the price listed on our slip of paper.  Ten more minutes of waiting while they tried to find the original sales clerk.  At long last we completed the transaction at the register, but were directed to the customer service desk to fill out paperwork for the warranty.  Another ten minutes.  Then Dan was instructed to go to another location where the machine would be tested for any defects.   Twenty minutes after that we were the proud and weary owners of our new contraption.

For the millionth time I asked myself, “Why do we put up with this stuff?”  And for the millionth time the answer came, “Because we LOVE living here.”   Would you believe that every time I pull into my stop at the subway station, my heart skips a beat as I look up at the towering apartment buildings of Aguas Claras?  How could I learn to love a place so passionately when I’ve only lived here six weeks?

This is our fourth major move in Brazil and with every change in location the Lord has given us wonderful co-workers, unique experiences, and new opportunities for growth.  Most of all, He’s given us a love for the people that we could never drum up ourselves.  When I think about how much I love my neighbors and how much I want them to come to Christ, I can’t help but realize how much more God loves them.   We long to be channels of His love and mercy to them.

Convenient means “easily accessible.”   Thank goodness that though shopping may be inconvenient, His grace is always at hand!


6 thoughts on “Ever-Present Grace

  1. Thank you Hope, for once again sharing a life experience with such good word pictures (I was getting a bit agitated “waiting” in line) ! I like the way you integrate Jesus, His love, His call, His purpose and the deep and wonderful peace and joy He gives as we follow Him.
    May your weekend be blessed and the DVD player provide enjoyable relaxation! barb

  2. How I relate to what you’ve written. I’ve asked myself the same questions with the same end result–God’s love compels me to reach out to our neighbors, loving them and giving me purpose. Thanks, Hope, for the “blow-by-blow” description that brings back so many good memories. Jean

  3. Sounds as if shopping in Brazil could lead to more patience. What sort of DVDs do you plan to play? I will pray for many fruitful friendships with your neighbors.

    • Hi Carol, We like our movies super clean so there’s not that much we can watch on TV. We like Monk, MacGyver, and Hogan’s Heroes, plus I have a lot of classic movies from the 1940’s and 50’s.

      • Monk, MacGyver and Hogan’s Heroes . . . it doesn’t get much better than that. Those are some of our family’s favorites too! Wow, your shopping experience does build patience. It is always great to hear from you.

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