The Hakes / by Clarita Castro

During Holy Week, Costa Rica is on vacation. What I mean by that is that everyone has a few days off and takes advantage of the dry and sunny weather and goes to the beach. During this week we celebrate that Christ is risen, but it has now become more of a tradition for many and has lost its true meaning.

About a month ago we had the privilege to tag along with the Hakes, a missionary family that serves in Nicaragua. They have three teenagers (but they didn't get to come on this trip) and have a niece (Kierstin) that has recently joined them in Nicaragua. We, along with Kierstin and another friend (Beth) from CINCEL headed out to a small town called San Francisco de Coyote. This small town is located in Guanacaste just a few hours west of San José. Our friend Beth was able to get us a cozy airbnb home, in the middle of nowhere. Twenty minutes down a bumpy paved road was worth the view of this home. In the morning around 5:30 am we would hear the Howler monkeys, waking us up for a new day ahead of us.

But let’s get to the point. Rachel and Tom Hakes: a love story untold that should be told! I wish I could write the many stories they shared during this trip, how the enemy had wanted to destroy their lives, but that in the midst of adversity they faced and overcame their giants. The Hakes work with Kings Castle, an organization that reaches out to children ruled by poverty in Nicaragua (I should say that they are found in many countries and not just in Nica). When a child is in need, Rachel and Tom are there to help, guide, and instruct. Through their lives, many are being blessed. Some, even, are being healed. Literally healed! The Hakes believe in the power of prayer and are not ashamed to tell the world that Jesus lives and that they are servants of His kingdom. During this trip, Rachel would face scorpions every single night. We were there for three nights, and it wasn’t until the last night that we had the brilliant Idea that we shold pray for these scorpions to go away, DUH! So we did… and guess what? No scorpions that night! During the San Francisco de Coyote days, we talked about Jesus, we shared our calling, we shared our vision for the countries that are ahead of us. Together, we understood, that family in Christ means everything to those that are not in their “homeland”. We headed to new adventures together, went to the beach and admired the beauty of God. We understood that in the midst of a hectic season, we needed a peace that surpasses all understanding, and these four days and three nights were all about accepting that peace. Thanks be to God that we no longer live for ourselves anymore, and that like a prisoner, we are lead to live a very different life than that which we would have never imagined. We are ruled and guided by a person called the Holy Spirit. The only difference here is that being a prisoner doesn’t mean oppresion, it means freedom. A prisoner, free from the world, but a slave to Christ. This is true freedom.