March 5, 2010

Earthquakes continued, The Toba, and Carceles

Just read a very distant internet aquaintances's blog (we wrote to them once or twice years ago) that the 8.8 earthquake in Chile was felt in Patagonia. Specifically in Bariloche, one of the places we have been considering for our home base. We actually corresponded with this ex-patriot, American couple for a little bit a few years ago. Even then we had been considering moving back to Argentina, specifically to this area, and I found them on the Internet. Gotta love the Internet. They were very helpful in giving an update on the present economy, cost of living, how to make the big move, etc.. It's funny, I guess this idea has been in the works for years. What's funnier still is that recently I prayed, "Oh, Lord, if this is what you are saying, please confirm it every day!". One day, after almost a year, I clicked on their blog to read this! It was one of those "whoa" moments. I've been having a lot of them lately.

Anyway, yesterday I was doing some research online about Argentina (I should know all this by now... but, whatever, I like to read). BBC online has some country profiles. On the Argentina page was a link to an article on the Toba, the forgotten people of the Impenetrable Forest near the Paraguayan border (see little red dots on this map). Years ago we were watching a show, via DirecTV, on the Toba. The poverty they live in is extreme. Tony just stared at the TV saying, "We need to go help them. How I would love to just go and help them. Everyone's forgotten about them, no one helps them." All I could think was, "Well, I'm not going back there, so I don't know how that's gonna happen". Deep down I knew I was in the wrong; I was being selfish, or fearful, or just plain stubborn and unwilling. But I couldn't change how I felt, I really NEVER wanted to go back to Argentina, definately not to this hot, steamy, disease and poverty-ridden place with my children. So I did the smart thing and just remained quiet.

Such a great helpmate, aren't I?

A couple of years later a new show came out, "Carceles" (translated "Prisons"). Great. This one was hard core. The reporter goes into the prisons of Argentina to talk to the prisoners about their fears, their worries, their guilt, and their repentance (ha, if any). Again, Tony just stared at the screen saying, "I wish I could go there and talk to them. Amazing what sin will do to you, huh? How I would love to just talk to them about Jesus..." or something to that effect. This time I thought, "Yeah, but, that's CRAZY. You don't know if you'd come out alive! That interview guy is really risking his life going in there. They could totally kill him!". I mean, it's not like American prisons. No guards, no dividing wall with a telephone, no cameras, nothin'. Now that's dangerous. But this time I just looked at him and thought, "What is my problem? Look at him. What if this is his calling? What if he actually is called to this kind of dangerous stuff? Oh, Lord, if so, you are going so have to perform one. big. miracle. You're going to have to change my heart. I don't want to stand in the way if this is from you."

I don't know when it happenned, but it did. I honestly shake my head everyday because I can't wait to get there. I'm probably the one who is most shocked. I'm sure I am, because I know myself. Do I really want to go back to Argentina? How can I actually want this? This is WEIRD. What is going ON??? But I really do want to go. It is weird, even for me. But as Tony likes to say, "Time to apply all we've been learning!". Haha. I'll say.

Maybe I'll never go to the Toba, but I do know that if we lived in Argentina, Tony could go. Maybe we could all go, but if not, Tony could easily go. Or round up a group of people to go. Take some food, some clothes, the gospel of LIFE and HOPE. I'm sure he'd never be the same if he did. I'm sure neither would I.


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