just wanted to give you a little picture of where we'll be staying. we are on the pacific coast of costa rica, and the cool thing about the geography here is that the rain forest meets the beach. i don't know exactly what its going to look like when i finally see it (i'm writing this ahead of time), but i am imagining something like the island on 'lost.' we will be staying about a mile from the beach in a cabina, enjoying the lush rainforest. hopefully the mornings will be sunny enough that we will be able to enjoy the beautiful beach, too. don't worry, i'll take lots of pictures!
in our church, we are continuing with a series called "letters from Jesus," in which we are looking at the seven letters in the beginning of revelation addressed to seven churches in asia. we are imagining what it would be like if we were to receive a hand-written letter from Jesus to our church. what would it say? how would we be encouraged? how would we be challenged? we've looked at three of the letters now. this week we looked at the letter to the church in pergamum. the letter to them includes some harsh criticism of some of their behavior, but it also says that Christ understands how difficult their situation is. and in case they feel like they are stuck in their sinfulness, Jesus says something amazing to them: i will give you a new name. the world gives us so many names, doesn't it? our parents, of course, give us our birth names. but the naming doesn't stop there. it continues right on through elementary school, high school, and into t