Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Long Weekend

It was a weekend that changed my whole perspective. Sunday marked Panama's 110 year of becoming separated from Colombia. The tradition literally started at dawn, from the sound of a firework that makes you feel like a gunshot is going off, to a parade that lasts all day. These are some of the traditions that hold true that Panama is a living spectrum of God's calling.

All the festivities started with the Dia de los Ninos. For half of the day, 12th grade students took over the teachers' classes. The day ended with a teacher versus student volleyball match. I was thrilled at some degree for the students taking over my class but still had a gut feeling that I had to go check up on them. In Mathew 19:14 Jesus said, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these." That is what I saw that day, for these children respected the continuity of what a teacher is and we as teachers put faith in their hands.

Then on Sunday a parade was held that started at 8 a.m. and ended around 10 p.m. All the schools and different organizations came together to show what it meant to be a country. Back in the states, we celebrate independence day by popping fireworks and having town parades, but not by bringing the whole state together. Panama came together and showed what it meant to be a country as a whole.

This made me realize that no matter what religion or affiliation you come or belong to, we all have one thing that brings us together - which is our belief in what we hold strong to. Jesus said to love one another, and what I witnessed in Panama was a true sighting of loving one another. People that did not know any children marching would come up to some child and hand them water or a towel to wipe their sweat. It was a day that changed my perspective in what it meant to be a beautiful human.

Today was flag day, and again there was a parade, but the schools and organizations would only march within their community. Cars and businesses were covered in the Panamanian flag and pride was shown. 110 years of being separated showed that even though there is still need of improvement, there is one thing that is for certain. God can really give you a sign without you realizing that it was right in front of you the whole time. 

Next week, I will travel to Costa Rica for a weekend. It will get my visa renewed, and I will stay at the Diocese of Costa Rica - which I know that I will have a story to tell.

I want to say thank you for giving me all the love back home and also being part of my journey.  

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