Our Journey Home

Friday, July 30, 2010

Ministry Visit #1

I have been so excited to blog about yesterday's ministry visit; thank you for praying, thank you for loving these children, and thank you for supplying the resources we needed! It is a true joy to keep a record of how God is orchestrating this 'tent children' ministry. And it blesses my heart to know you are reading, rejoicing, and celebrating God's work with me!

Yesterday morning, our team loaded up kickballs, bubbles, parachutes, snacks, sack lunches, cases of water, juice boxes, baby wipes, story boards, coloring books, crayons, and of course, a passion for Jesus! We arrived on the farm about 9:30am.

When we pulled up, there were no children outside. We began to unload our supplies while our translator began peeking her head inside trailers and inviting our friends out to play. Slowly, children began to come out from their tents and the trailers to join the fun. In less than 15 minutes, a kickball game had been started, the parachutes were popping up colorful balls, and bubbles were filling the air.

Next, it was snack time! While the children were enjoying their mid-morning treats, Pastor Ryan began to read the story of creation. Ryan had colorful story board pictures, and he is very expressive, so the children were captivated! Ryan would read just a little, and then pause while our translator repeated what he had just said in Spanish. It was fun to watch the younger children listen intently, turn their heads from Ryan to Dorian while she translated, and then turn back to Ryan. It was almost as if they were thinking, "I know this man is telling us a really great story! Now, what is he talking about?" wink. (The older children were listening, too, but many of them are bilingual.)

After our story, each child was given a large ziploc baggie filled with stickers, a new box of crayons, and a coloring book about 'La Creacion'! The children were eager to color and it was a great time to talk with them about the pictures, which depicted the story Pastor Ryan had just shared. It was unbelievable how quickly time passed while we were there! It was already time for lunch!

We spread out blankets and our parachutes for a picnic. During lunch, I had the opportunity to talk with a little boy named Alex. (His real name is Alejandro, but he said everyone calls him Alex. He told me I could call him Alex, too.) I had the opportunity to be on his kickball team- and wow! He is fast and great at kicking the ball! When it was time to color, he was taking the time to trace the pictures and then shade them in; he's an artist as well! I told him that he was very talented, complimenting him on his soccer and art skills. I asked him if he knew who has given him all his talents, and he replied, "Ummm- God?" I assured him, that yes, indeed, God has made him talented AND very special. I also told him that God has got big plans for him. He tried to hide his smile by tucking his head to his chest. I told Alex that I couldn't wait to go home and tell my husband all about Alex and the talents God has given him! This time Alex couldn't hide his smile. He replied, "Really? What's his name?"

I am so incredibly thankful the Lord has invited us to join him in this ministry! It was a priveledge to spend the morning with these precious children that God has made, in his own image. It refreshed my soul to look into the eyes of a nine year old little boy and tell him that God made him special, and God has big plans for Him. Please continue to pray for these children. We will be going to visit them each week until they move to their next location.

"You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead, they put it on its stand, and it give light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven."- Matthew 5:14-16