Recently I traveled to Antigua, Guatemala, for the first time. Although I want to travel all around the world, Guatemala was never on my radar. But it was a “God thing.” I’m writing a Guatemala blog series to show you the beautiful pictures and to share about the amazing things God did there. This is Blog #6, Praying on the hill with the Cross (Cerra de la Cruz). You can read my other blogs in this Guatemala Blog Series at the end of this post.
“Traveling makes one modest–you see what a tiny place you occupy in the world.” — Gustave Flaubert
The above quote is inspiring and so true. When I recently traveled to Guatemala, I very much felt this way.
First, because even though I’ve been taking Spanish lessons for a couple of months and plan to continue with my instructor Elvia Reyes, I still speak so little Spanish and understand even less. When I was there in Guatemala, I realized how much I really needed to learn the Spanish language. Plus, Elvia is so beautiful (inside and out) and wears a size zero or one (intimating to someone trying to lose weight!).
Second, my friend Kim, who spontaneously bought a lovely condo home there in Jocotenango after traveling to Guatemala numerous times, is larger than life. She too is beautiful, and so outgoing (she makes friends everywhere), smart, frugal (she finds great deals wherever she goes), very fluent in Spanish (she’s been speaking it since she was 16 years old), and so fun to hang around.
Third, as I stood on the famous “hill of the Cross” –Cerra de la Cruz–where you can see the entire city of Antigua, Guatemala and the nearby Volcan de Agua (you can see all three volcanoes on a clear day), I realized how small and insignificant I am and how big our God is.
What a magnificent view. It’s beautiful.
As I shared in my last post, when I traveled to Guatemala, I didn’t know what God’s exact mission was for me there. But I knew that He’d show me when I got there and He did.
Although you can hike or take concrete steps to the overlook, my great driver Allan drove me up the winding hill in his van. You can either drive or take a tuk tuk to the top of the hill. However, you will have to pay a Q15 parking fee. It is well worth going!
I was so glad and thankful that Allan drove me, as it was still muddy there and there’s no way I could have climbed those 330 steps to the top and back down! (I sprained my toe about a year and a half ago, and sometimes my knee hurts climbing stairs!) Guatemala sure made me realize out of shape physically I am, due to all the walking you need to do. It’s time to get back to exercise before I go again!
It had been raining (and cloudy) for two days prior to me going, which was why I didn’t go on the day I planned. But God knew the perfect timing!
You want as clear of a day as possible to have the best view and photographs/videos. In this picture, I could see the yellow Santa Catalina arch, one of my fave places in Antigua. There are benches to sit and enjoy the picturesque view. You might want to go to Cerra de la Cruz after you have explored the city, and then you can pick out your fave spots from the top of the hill.
I knew that one thing God wanted me to do when I traveled to Guatemala was to go to Cerra de la Cruz and to pray over the people and the land of Antigua and Guatemala.
At my Air BnB that morning, I wrote down specific Scriptures to read out loud from the top of the hill as prophetic declarations of God’s blessings for the land and the people. These verses are between God, me, and Guatemala. 🙂
Although my driver Allan doesn’t understand or speak a lot of English, I told him in Spanish when I got out of the van that I was going to read something when I came to the top of the hill, and he realized that I was praying for the people and the land. I had given him my phone so I could hold the paper with the Scriptures, and he took pictures of me doing this.
It was so peaceful and beautiful there. I was thankful that I could see more of the tops of the volcanoes that day (despite the clouds). It feels surreal walking down the street, seeing a volcano!
There were very few people there when Allan and I went, which was nice. Sometimes vendors are there to sell trinkets, drinks, snacks, and ice cream. You’ll probably want to go during the daytime, as there’s been reports of robberies there (police do patrol there). We had no problems with anyone bothering us (although a little dog there kept barking!).
This was definitely one of my favorite places to visit in Antigua. My friend Kim told me that the week would go fast, and it did. Next time I travel to Guatemala, I’d like to linger longer at Cerra de la Cruz and other places.
Another interesting thing that happened when I was in Antigua was when I went to a coffee shop near Parque Central, Cafe Barista, which has delicious cappucino and banana bread, by the way! Many people were there working on their laptops, wearing earbuds. While Kim was on a Zoom meeting with her coach, I had a “Divine appointment” with a woman in the bathroom!
When I came out of the restroom and washed my hands, I had trouble getting paper towels out of the dispenser. A woman at the other sink helped me to get the towels. We began chatting, and she started opening her heart to me, sharing how she had lived many years in the USA, but now lived in Antigua, retiring.
Raquel was having trouble making it financially, and was confused whether she should stay or go back to America. I offered to pray for her and she said yes. I prayed for God to give her clarity, direction, and abundantly bless her finances. When I finished, she had tears in her eyes and agreed with me that this was not just an accident, it was a Divine opportunity from God. God can even work in a coffee shop bathroom!
Another thing that happened when I was in Guatemala was that I saw a three-year old beggar girl in the street with her mom and her younger sister. There are many children (and adults) begging in the streets, especially at Parque Central.
Kim knew this beautiful, precious little girl, whose name is Maria. She gave her some money and we stopped to chat with her. I prayed for her. There are many dangers to children (and adults) begging in the streets. Please pray for them, that God would provide for them and get them out of this lifestyle. There are also many dogs and cats hungry in the street.
In my next blog, I’ll share how God unexpectedly used Kim, Stan, me, and others to help with hungry people in Antigua, Guatemala, on the day I was supposed to go home to America. He is an amazing God!
Did you miss my other blog posts in my Guatemala Blog Series? Here are they below. Enjoy, comment, like, and share!
Blog 1: My trip to Antigua, Guatemala http://www.bethjones.net/my-trip-to-antigua-guatemala/
Blog 2: Travel requirements, the Guatemala grocery stores, and the street markets http://www.bethjones.net/travel-requirements-travel-requirements-grocery-stores-street-markets/
Blog 3: Antigua’s beautiful ancient cathedrals http://www.bethjones.net/antigua-beautiful-cathedrals/
Blog 4: The older Antigua, Guatemala cathedral, Iglesia El Carmen, and San Juan de Dios Convent http://www.bethjones.net/the-older-antigua-guatemala-cathedral-el-carmen-san-juan-de-dios-convent/
Blog 5: A surprise encounter at Parque Central http://www.bethjones.net/surprise-encounter-parque-central-salvation-prophetic-words/