Monday, March 20, 2006

Topo (far right, kneeling) is a local guy that used to be on the Costa Rican professional surf team. He hasn’t surfed competitively for a few years but he still gets out in the water on a regular basis. Having grown up in this area and having spent much of his life on his own, Topo saw a need and started giving free surf lessons on Saturday mornings to a lot of the local kids in town who either don’t have parents or whose parents don’t spend much time with them. They’re not quite street kids, but most of them don’t have too much of a family to give structure to their lives. We’ve been getting to know Topo and several months ago, before we left for the States on furlough, we started helping him and his girlfriend with the lessons. It’s a pretty cool thing to be taking place here because you just don’t see too many locals that actually volunteer within their own community. It just doesn’t happen. Anyway, I started taking my older daughter Maili to the surf lessons back in October. She has a great time, is learning to surf and gets to know more of the local kids and I have a chance to push some kids into a few waves, getting to know them a little better too. Different people drop in to help and on any give week, there will be a couple of local guys and a couple of expats like us that are just taking some of their time to invest a little time in the lives of some kids that need it. Who knows what this might lead to down the road. As we get the skate park up and running, many of these same kids will come down and join us for a skate session and hopefully, will get the opportunity to experience God’s love in a personal way. That’s what it’s all about. Christ came to earth to save us. One of the benefits of this is that we get to have a personal relationship with the almighty God that created us. These kids need to know that this is possible for them as well… That there is a God that loves them and has a plan for them. They need to be told this but they also need to be shown, first-hand. At it’s most basic level, all it is is pushing some kids into a few waves. But it’s an investment that has potential to return some really big dividends.