The Berlin Wall had fallen November 9, 1989. I was in San Antonio, Texas for my very first Aglow International Conference. Having been a member of this International Service organization to help women and children in need around the world, I was very excited to meet leadership from around the world.
Opening day of the Conference is my favorite part with the Parade of Flags, the women dressed in Native American Regalia representing their Nations, the women from Asia, Africa, Central and South America, Australia, and Europe wearing their traditional dress. Foreign Interpreters in booths at the back translating our speakers into their native languages. At this particular Conference, we were seated by languages. I divided my time between the Spanish section and the Deaf Section in order to hone my skills.
This year the Flag Parade was in alphabetical order. Jane Hansen, the CEO, had asked us to watch and pray and the Holy Spirit would prompt us to pray for a particular country. That would be my personal assignment for the year. I was just positive it would be Israel, as I love all things Israel from the food, to the language, to the culture, to the fact that God blesses those who bless Israel. Instead a young girl, dressed in red, white and blue from Costa Rica walked past and I couldn’t take my eyes off of her. “Costa Rica, Lord? But they don’t have problems. They are the “Switzerland of Central America” with no standing Army. I must be mistaken. I’ll talk to You about it later Lord.”
Suddenly the Conference Hall was abuzz with the news that there were representatives from East Germany. We were so excited. Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, but no East Germany. We were disappointed; perhaps they hadn’t been able to leave after all. Then surprise, surprise, they announced Germany. Here were the two women representing East and West Germany walking out, holding their flags and holding hands. They came out UNITED, representing ONE COUNTRY!! The stadium went wild; we cried; we laughed; we hugged. Germany was free!
That session was over, and I got up to leave the Spanish-speaking section. A slim, curly haired redhead with glasses walked up to me and said in Spanish, “The Lord told me to give this to you.” She pushed a small package into my hands, turned around and left. Flabbergasted and scratching my head, I opened the package. It was a little colorfully painted ox cart with a load of coffee beans and the plaque said, “Costa Rica.” Wow! “OK Lord, I get the message. You want me praying for Costa Rica. I accept.”
For the next four days I described this girl and asked if anyone knew her. Nobody could tell me anything. Was she an angel? Then at the airport, there she was about to board an airplane for Costa Rica. We exchanged names, addresses and phone numbers. That was the beginning of many adventures.
■ Loraine Joy is a small business owner and Arbuckle resident. Contact Loraine at email@example.com.