After nearly 30 hours of traveling, we finally arrived at Campo Alegría last night. Oh what a trip we had! Before I get into the details, let me explain some of what’s been circling my head these days…
I recently read a book called The Boy Who Came Back from Heaven: A Remarkable Account of Miracles, Angels, and Life beyond This World
- a story about a tragic car accident that should have taken the life of 6-year-old Alex Malarkey. But, God had other plans. This young boy has an amazing story in which he is able to accurately describe events that happened when his neck was broken and he lay unconscious in the back seat of his dad’s wrecked car, as well as when he was in a two-month long coma. In the book (written by Alex’s dad), Alex tells about those experiences he had while unconscious, from meeting Jesus, being comforted by angels, and visiting God’s temple in heaven.
I won’t recount the whole book – it’s a quick read, so I’ll let you do that for yourself. But, I did want to comment about one aspect of Alex’s story. He talks frequently about the angels among us, that we can’t see. This concept is certainly not new. The Bible frequently talks about angels doing God’s work on earth. But Alex was able to actually see those angels at various points during the accident and his subsequent recovery.
In additional to seeing angels, he was also allowed to see demons. Just after the accident, he remembers seeing the devil sitting in front of him in the car, telling him the accident was Alex’s fault because he asked his father a question that distracted him from driving. Alex says the devil is able to tell us three different lies at once, as if shooting out as many as possible to ensure at least one is believed. Wow. Who hasn’t fallen victim to a few of those lies in his or her lifetime… If nothing else, Alex’s story is a powerful reminder of the unseen spiritual warfare that occurs around us every day.
The past 48 hours have been another great reminder of this battle.
We woke up on Wednesday morning ready to finish packing and start our journey. While we moved through our To Do list, it seemed the devil threw hiccup after hiccup to try and distract us. For example,
- Our 4 dozen t-shirts were late from the printer (with incorrect sizes when they were finally ready a mere two ours before we left)
- Our oldest daughter started throwing up less than 12 hours before our plane was scheduled to depart
- I spent two hours on the phone with Delta trying to sort out a problem with our baggage
That last hiccup was hilarious. We were told by four different folks at Delta – on the day we were to depart – that we would have to pay $55 per person to check two bags. This was in stark contrast to the “two bags for free to Central America” we were told upon booking our flights four months ago. I even had one of the customer service people tell me “the web site is wrong.” After arriving at the airport, the attendant reiterated the same thing we had heard on the phone: first bag costs $25, and the second is $30.
Did I mention we had 24 bags? No less than 14 of which were filled with kids’ shoes to distribute to the poor in Nicaragua?
Then, all of the sudden, she presses a button and (*poof*) says (rather unceremoniously, I might add) “Hmmm… it now says you get two bags for free.”
Wow. Take that, devil