He Knows My Name video
7 Instead of your shame
you will receive a double portion,
and instead of disgrace
you will rejoice in your inheritance.
And so you will inherit a double portion in your land,
and everlasting joy will be yours.
Today I’m going to back up a bit and fill in some of the details. Details with names like Heidi, Linda, Henry, Willy, Yenifer, Elder, and Dolce Maria. Details with smiles, tears, giggles and hands. Lots of hands. Hands reaching and holding, leading and helping, praying and preparing. Hands with arms that hug and hold on.
Heidi is a beautiful 17-year-old wife and mama. Her 14-month-old son Austin is an adorable little chubba with soft black curls. The team that Noah and I were on built the home for Heidi and her husband Anabel and their son. Heidi was somewhat shy, but determined to help out however she could with her new home. She was often working with one hand while holding Austin on her hip. Heidi’s joy and gentle pride in her new home was far greater than my joy in my new home. We were blessed and privileged to be a part of their lives and kneel with them as the committed their lives to Jesus Christ in a moment so powerful that I cannot even begin to find the words for it. Heidi was as much a gift to us as we were to her.
You can see a picture of Heidi, Anabel and Austin in yesterday’s post.
Linda is my little scarf. Her favorite place was in my arms with her arms wrapped around my neck and her head on my shoulder. Her sweet whispers for “dolce” or sweets were more often rewarded with a kiss on her cheek than actual candy. Mostly because as soon as one child had a piece of candy you were swarmed by the rest of the children in the village and the candy was soon gone. We each had one or two children who we became attached to emotionally. Linda was mine. She would come take my hand, regardless of what I was doing, and pull me somewhere in the village to show me what I could not understand. The love and trust that Linda poured into me during those few days were a gift beyond measure. Linda’s family had already received their house and they never missed a discipleship meeting. When we gathered around to pray for the houses little Linda was right beside me with her hands on the houses as well. A tiny little wisp of a girl with more power in her simple prayers than the rest of us put together.
Henry, oh Henry! Henry is a deaf and mute little boy that the mission nurse has unofficially adopted. He was cast aside by the village and Erin was told not to bother with him because he was nothing. Erin is now referred to as his “white mama”. For someone who can’t speak, Henry made sure that he was well known by all of us. He has no trouble communicating what he wants. Henry loves to draw. He will cover every tiny space on the small pieces of paper he can find with pictures and tug at your hand to show you his artistry. I would not be surprised at all if I see Henry’s artwork on display in museums one day. He is quite a gifted artist.
Willy is an adorable little boy with a huge smile and ginormous sweet tooth. I don’t really know any details about Willy’s life, I just know Willy. Everyone knew Willy and Willy made sure that he made each of us smile. Willy was Noah’s favorite while we were there. He loved playing with Willy.
Yenifer is absolutely beautiful! She is maybe three years old at most. Beautiful eyes the color of chocolate pudding. A smile that would light up your soul. Soft black hair that always seemed to be attempting to caress her kissable cheeks. The first two days anyone could pick Yenifer up and carry her around. She giggled and hugged freely. The third day Yenifer was fine as long as none of us picked her up. As soon as one of us tried she would start to cry very loudly. The common remark when holding Yenifer was that we all wanted to take her home with us. Somehow that remark had been translated to Yenifer and she was suddenly terrified that we were going to take her away from her family. We all felt terrible. She had been so full of joy until she felt threatened. These children were all full of joy at the simplest things that we never think twice about. Seeing themselves on our cameras was something they never tired of. If we had been able to bring them home with us we would destroy them. In our desire to give them the world we would remove from them their contagious joy and replace it with the same restless boredom that our own children have. Thank God we could not bring Yenfier home with us. Her light needs to shine!
Elder is a 19-year-old young man who should be strong and vibrant. His body has been so invaded by the parasites present in the water supply that his kidneys are shutting down and he can no longer even walk. Elder’s family was one of the four families that our teams built houses for. For Elder this new home was amazing. He could now see during the daylight hours and there would be the possibility of a cross breeze to cool his feverish body with the window and door on their new house. There was a tangible energy surrounding the house when the team was inside as the Gospel was presented, almost as if the house itself were preparing to receive Jesus Christ. The team members who were in with the family had tears in their eyes as they described Elder’s hands reaching for heaven to receive the love of the Savior. This was the final dedication of homes and at the end we all packed in to the room as much as we could to pray for Elder and his family, all of them now our family as well; adopted children of the one true God.
Dolce Maria….. Sweet Marie. While we were in Guatemala the orphanage that is attached to the mission base received a new guest in the form of a 2 week old premie baby girl. I’ve seen baby dolls that were bigger than Dolce. If she had been born in the U.S. she would still be in an incubator in a hospital until she weighed enough to bring her home. This sweet baby is blessed beyond what she will ever know. She is in the care of loving, committed Christians who will raise her in a veritable castle. The conditions at the base are so far beyond what she would have experienced had she not been brought here. Holding the little peanut was a nightly competition. 🙂
These are but a few of the “details” of the trip. I cannot sufficiently express the gifts I received …. in the details.
To Be Continued…….