I feel as though this week has been rather distinctive. Definitely a defining week in my time here. I’ll try to sum up all of my experiences. But to start- a scene that has been heavy on my heart.
Last Wednesday I took a bus to a different part of Salamanca, and when I walked up to the bus stop, there was this little girl with darker skin and dark hair, and I immediately thought of Guatemala. She looked to be about 6, and just like any child, she was running back and forth. When she turned around, I caught a glimpse of her face and my heart skipped a beat. There was something about her features that looked so much like Claudia. Except this sweet girl had obviously lived a very hard life. Her clothes were worn, her teeth rotting, and her round, brown eyes were rather sunken. They were the same round eyes as Claudia, and her smile was precious. The innocence of childhood and the spark of joy were still lingering there.
I watched as she skipped back to her family, and my heart broke. They looked like they were merely surviving, just scraping by. The mom had a very long, dark face that was hardened by the world. It had an almost scary look to it, so full of bitterness were her eyes and facial expression. She resembled some of the Gypsies that I’d seen, and I wondered if perhaps that is where she got her unusual features. The dad looked to be South American. In front of the dad was a stroller with a little boy in it. He looked to be about 3, and there was something very, very wrong with him. He reminded me of the pictures I see of pediatric cancer patients in the hospitals. He had peach fuzz on top of his head, with the same beautiful big eyes that just popped out of his thin little face. He was smiling and shouting things at his sister, as his gruff dad stood with arms crossed, waiting for the bus to arrive. A second stroller held a little baby, and though I didn’t see much of him, he had the same beautiful skin as the rest, blissfully sleeping, still unaware of the rough world in which he had entered just months ago. I wrote in my journal the next day, “That family made my heart hurt. They made me uncomfortable, and even a little scared. I had not seen such an unhealthy, poor, desperate family yet on this trip. Their faces have continued to haunt me all day.”
THIS is why I am learning Spanish. To go love on children, to minister to families, to help broken mothers like that get on the path to hope. I so long to do that. Waiting on the Lord for His will and His timing has been so hard, so transforming, and so beautiful.
For whatever reason, that family brought out this deep love and burden even more. I don’t know what will come of it. Sometimes the Lord just desires to remind us of His call. Other times, He’s growing that seed a little bit more, for something special.
Dad, I don’t think our time in Guatemala is finished. Can’t wait to see what the Lord is doing J