Perseverance

The biggest curiosity I have found in living here in Nicaragua is the difference between people from the exact same circumstances and culture yet have diametrically opposed viewpoints on life.

Some folks do what most of us would do in a similar situation and give the same deck of cards, so to speak. These are the folks who see hopelessness and despair all around them and give way to those emotions. This is not a judgmental statement. I have no clue how I would react. I was born with built in lifelines. I have family and friends who love me very much. There are people who I can count on if times were really terrible. Even more than that, I and they have the resources to buffer and ease most potholes that come before me. 

Because of that I am not sure how I would play out the exact same scenarios presented to most Nicaraguans.

I want to talk today, however, about a few of the folks I know who have chose different paths. They have risen above circumstances. One in particular. I won’t use his name, but know he is a real person and because of that I don’t want to embarrass him on this forum.

This friend of mine has been told his entire life that he wasn’t good enough. He wasn’t smart enough. He came from the wrong family. His life was laid out before him as a series of challenges that he would fail before one day it would all end in his death. That sounds pretty bleak. He thought so too. So he decided to change his circumstances. He saved and scrimped and bought books that would help him learn as much as he could about customer service and sales. He spent sleepless nights learning English while not having much contact with anyone who spoke the language. 

One fateful day we met. He was desperately looking for someone who could teach him what gaps his book learning had left in his education. We, native English speakers, don’t realize idioms, catch phrases, and words with multiple meaning reside in our speech. Things books are hard pressed to teach.

Think about it. What would “being on thin ice” mean to someone who has never experienced winter. Why is your shoulder cold and if it was why would you give it to someone. Or how do get “under the weather?” All of these and hundreds more are expressions that you and I take for granted. But if you were not raised the way you were raised, you would find them very confusing.

It seemed impossible. He was told by many to quit. He was constantly encouraged to accept his inevitable future. But he would not. He had hope. 

He got a job. He is working in a call center now. He even teaches some of his fellow employees nuances of English. His life is stable, productive and fulfilling all because he would not give up.

I am reminded that Sir James Dyson, it is said, tried 5,124 different designs for his revolutionary vacuum cleaner before he came up with one that sold over a billion dollars in one year alone. He had hope and perseverance. He did not accept his present condition but saw what might be.

That’s how I want to live my life. That’s why UnoMas exists. The hope we find in our faith compels us forward to heights we could never have dreamed of before.

I pray that hope is instilled in your heart. If not, write me, let’s talk about it.

God is doing amazing things here in Nicaragua. Let me know if you want to be a part of that.

Dios los bendiga 

Jeff