Today's post is from Robin...
Today's been an amazing day! It began with the mission team finishing the house we worked on yesterday. We built a ramp and moved in new furniture. After Kurt dedicated the house, Vilma sang a song for us, and for the first time I saw, her grandson, Eduardo, smile as she was singing of trusting the Lord. It was a beautiful moment to see Vilma walk into her new home. She invited us all in, and then she encouraged us to always trust in the Lord, because He will provide for us in times of trouble. She told us to always show His love to one another.
I would see living in a house the size of a shed with no electricity or running water as trouble that God needed to deliver from, but to Vilma and Eduardo, that was the blessing. How eye-opening it was to see how much I take for granted and how blind I am to God’s abundant blessings on me!
The last part of the day included a long drive up a bumpy mountain road to deliver beans and rice to families in a village. We gave a bag of food to each family and prayed for them. The children received pillowcase dresses, t-shirts and toys, and they were so happy! After delivering all the food, we returned to play a large game of Spanish ‘duck, duck, goose.’
My limited Spanish vocabulary allowed me to have a very (very!) basic conversation with several young girls. However, I know that they were laughing at me too when I said I speak English and very little Spanish. Yet that did not stop them from following our group around, holding my hand, and talking with me. Even though their lives were not what I would see as happy or ideal, they still giggled as I asked to take pictures of them with their new dresses. One girl begged me for another toy, complete with folded hands and batted eyelashes. I suppose some things are always the same, no matter how different you are!
This entire trip and today especially have shown me so many things. It is easy to listen to people talk about mission trips and not be changed. However, to see poverty in front of my eyes puts a second thought in my head whenever I think ‘I need this,’ of ‘I am starving,’ ‘I am dying of pain, hunger, etc. ‘What am I lacking? What do I need? Nothing. Have I ever been really starving? No. Have I ever been in terrible pain without being able to access medical care? No.
A simple new house can be life-changing and a small toy can make a child’s day. If I make this a truth in my life, I should be so full of joy and peace and contentment! I know it is also easy to feel changed when you are immersed, but things gradually go back to normal as I return to my big home, my closets full of clothes, and stores full of things to buy. I pray that for me and the rest of the mission team that will not happen to us. I hope we will always remember Vilma’s joy over a house no bigger than a shed or a child’s smile for the equivalent of a Happy Meal toy and apply that truth to our lives.
Thank you so much for everyone that has supported us on this trip!