We had an amazingly awesome day in Guatemala.
We went to church this morning near the orphanage. It's a newer church with only about 10 people, whose pastor has been taught by the owner of the orphanage. The kiddos also go there. It was all in Spanish and I think I followed about 80% of the sermon! At the end, they had a little "open mic" time and a super sweet Guatemalan lady said, "I want to thank the Americans for coming here and serving. May God bless them for what they're doing." After the service had ended, I went up and gave her a hug and began talking to her. We were talking about my family and I told her my dad is a doctor in the States. She looked at me and said, "Ahh.. i have been sick." I brought over somebody else to help me ask more specific medical questions and at the end my dad concluded that she needed to go see somebody and get some medications for her ailment. She repeated through the whole conversation that she could not afford to see the doctor and buy the medicine she needs. When we asked how much it was she said $40. $40 people! To go see the doctor and buy medicine. She asked us if we would be interested in buying some of her handmade goods so that she could go get her medicine. We readily agreed and she invited us to come to her house and make our purchases. We followed her down the dusty road, on dirt pathways, over a plywood bridge, across a concrete slab that was laid over the sewer trench, and into her house. It had a dirt floor, a table, ants crawling everywhere, one lone lightbulb, a bed that is shared by the whole family, and a chair. And she was embarassed. She apologized for her house. My heart broke for her. In my pathetic Spanish I tried to express to her that she should not apologize. She pulled out her bag of jewelry that she makes and we purchased enough to pay for her medicine. As we finished up, she insisted she give us each a necklace. This poor woman who doesn't even have running water in our house wants to give everyone in our family a necklace that she made- items she could sell in the market. What generosity. So we took a picture with them and then headed out. What could we say to somehow make the situation better? Nothing. We had done what we could to help her and show her Christ's love. As we walked back up the hill to the orphanage I just wanted to sit and cry out to God. I do not understand this world. I do not understand why some have been given SO much and some so little. It makes me so sad. This was our first God-appointment and I'm trusting Him for many others!
After this we headed down to Panajachel (the nearest town) for lunch and some grocery shopping (yaay we finally have food!).
We came back up and Caleb and I got to teach Claudia and Ornoria (the other older girl) to ride their bikes. IT WAS SO MUCH FUN! I feel so privileged that I get to be so apart of their lives here for a week. Then, one of the mammas came up and asked me to teach her how to ride! Oh the joy of seeing her face light up when she finally got it! I felt that surge of joy and pride when my "student" finally got it as I ran up and gave her a hug.
This evening, we sat and just played with the kids. They had a movie on and would take turns sitting in our laps. I'd rub their backs, play with their hair, tickle them, and just give them love. Another incredibly fun thing has been seeing Caleb fall in love with the kids. For years, I prayed that God would place the same love and burden in my family's hearts as he had done for me. Thank you Lord for answering this prayer!!
Thank you so much for your prayers. My heart leaps to see your kind emails, comments, facebook notes, etc.
Sending my love from Guatemala,