I have never felt completely comfortable falling asleep to the sound of geckos chirping overhead. I spent
4 1/2 months listening to them each night while living in Nicaragua to adopt our son. I actually thought they were birds at first.
My neighbor peered at me strangely when I asked her what kind of birds kept chirping each night. She informed me that I must be referring to the geckos.
In any event, I remember thanking God each night after I returned home, for the opportunity to fall asleep in a comfy bed in a gecko free room. That lasted for about three years.
Then one afternoon while my husband rustled through the pantry he casually asked me what I thought about moving to Peru. It was not even on my radar. He further explained that the international director of our missions organization wanted us to pray about moving to Lima in order to train 60 churches in soccer ministry.
The very first time we prayed about moving to Peru, three things happened within a span of a couple days:
- The Peruvian National Football (Soccer) Team played the U.S. National Team – a big deal to our football loving family.
- Upon asking the girls on the tennis team that I coached, if any new exchange students had arrived whom we could recruit for the team that year, they promptly replied,
“No, there is only one exchange student this year and she doesn’t play tennis.”
“Oh, where is she from?” I asked.
“Peru,” they responded.
(A few weeks later, I invited her to our home to practice Spanish with our girls.)
- My husband ran into Home Depot with our girls while I waited in the car with our son. My girls like to look at paint sample cards any time they’re in home improvement stores. They decided to grab one card while inside and immediately wanted to show me the pretty color they had picked out. I looked at it, and then glanced at the name of the color. It was called, I kid you not, Peru. I couldn’t believe it. And just in case you’re wondering… Peru is dark purple.
I would never pack up my house and move to another country merely based on these three factors. But, I think God has a sense of humor, and was messing with us, so to speak. Deep in my heart, however, I already began to sense that the time was coming for our family to go off the grid.
Going off the grid involved several major transitions including:
- Renting out our house
- Moving into missionary housing
- Homeschooling our kids online
- Attending language school in Costa Rica
We’re actually just finishing up our time in Costa Rica. And, yes, it did involve listening geckos at night. It also involved a hurricane, an earthquake, and homemade tortillas. I’ll tell you all about it, and more, in my next post entitled Off The Grid: Our Family’s Month Long Trek In Costa Rica.