If you thought this post was going to be about Christmas… It’s not! Somehow it is well over Christmas and almost into February and I have yet to post some blogs from a while back!
As a result, over the next two weeks, I’ll be posting on things from as far back as months ago and from as recent as yesterday! Get excited.
November – 2015
Over Thanksgiving Break, Brandon and I were able to get away and take a 3-day trip to Cartagena, Colombia. We had tried to take this trip last year, but, had to cancel due to some visa issues.
This time around, it was a dream.
Old, walled cities and ancient fortresses. Colonial buildings dotting street after street. Colorful facades, intricate designs, horse-drawn carriages and restaurant after cafe after ice cream shop. What a beautiful break it was to explore someplace new.
The first two days we walked around the grid-like Old City, got lost a bunch of times, and walked some more. We were able to stock up on some essentials that we’ve been out of here and were so thankful for the opportunity to get some of the basics there. I would honestly tally up the miles walked in the 20s, and the sweat by the buckets. It. Was. HOT.
The second night we moved to a hotel just outside the Old City’s walls and stayed on the coast a little closer to the airport as our flight was the next day. The hotel we stayed at had everything! We literally felt like kids as we took full advantage of all of its amenities: balcony, pool(s), fitness center, air conditioning, room service (first time for everything as it was the cheapest option out there, yes please!).
How could anything go wrong/why would I get frustrated by anything on such a dream trip? Well, because I’m human and that self-centered part of me likes to stick it’s little foot into everything. The reason: coffee.
Seriously, guys. I’m ashamed.
Let me back it up a little:
One of the many joys of Colombia (that I had done research prior to leaving because I was just so excited) was that they had lots of coffee shops that served more than 8 ounces of coffee. One particular coffee shop is called Juan Valdez and it is a chain in a number of different countries around the world. Is it the absolute best coffee ever? No. But, did they serve 16 beautiful ounces of tasty coffee in one cup? YES.
While we were able to go there the first full day while we were there, I was itching to go back the next day. However, that was also the day we needed to go to the grocery store, got lost on the way back, couldn’t find the Popsicle shop we’d been searching for for over an hour, found the Popsicle shop but couldn’t find our way back, had to pack up our hotel room, and leave the current hotel we were staying at all by 11:00 a.m.
We did not make it to the coffee shop, and guess who put up a big stink about it? This girl. Not proud of that ugly monster that was roaring on the inside of me that just wanted what I wanted and was bummed that normal circumstances got in the way.
I was bummed, no coffee for me, the taxi driver ripped us off, and I just couldn’t believe we missed the last opportunity (see how dramatic I was?) to go to the nice coffee shop/dreamland (as I called it) for the foreseeable future.
I was not fun company on the way over to the next hotel. The worst part is that I knew I was not fun company but I still made that conscious decision that we all are aware of when we are making it to still be grumpy even though I had no good reason to be grumpy.
Well, wouldn’t you know that upon walking into our new hotel, there happened to be a Juan Valdez coffee shop right smack dab in the middle of the lobby.
Yes. As we walked through the revolving doors and were greeted by glorious air conditioning. I was also smacked in the face by my own selfishness and God’s sense of humor.
Even after my grumpiness and complaints, He still took into account those big and small desires and looked out for me.
How beautiful is that? How undeserving our we?
And this is about silly coffee! Literally something that absolutely does not matter. But, because it matters to us, it matters to Him.
I am thankful that I had such an obvious reminder of my own smallness in the light of a God who is Bigger, more Loving and more Gracious than we could ever be and beyond anything we could ever ask for.
Needless to say, I need to tattoo that little reminder on the back of my hand so that the next time I am tempted to let my own pettiness and selfish desires rain on the parade I quickly put that in check and move on.
Instead of focusing on our own desires and what we want, let’s challenge ourselves to put as much time, effort and thoughts (that we put on ourselves) onto serving those around us and being an active part in seeing their wants and needs be met?