Monday, December 3, 2012

Day 2, Part II: Honduras 2012

After church we changed clothes and headed off to "Power Chicken" (a local fast food). There we met the kids from Hogar Esparanza and treated them to lunch. It was so much fun to interact with them and see the excitement in their eyes. We all ate and ate and ate. It was delicious.
 It was a blessing to sit with them and serve them.
Maylin made a buddy. They laughed and teased each other the entire afternoon. He was an extremely well mannered young man. Such a sweet spirit.
After lunch we headed to "Canopy Land" where we treated Hogar Esperanza and another orphanage Hogar Santidad to a fun afternoon. (Something they rarely, if ever, get to do). At Canopy Land there is a putt putt course, a short zip line, and a paint ball course.
The family of Hogar Esperanza. Angie the American Mother is in the right corner. She is an amazing woman with an amazing faith. She and her husband love these kids and care for them as their own.
These three kids... One is an orphan, one was an orphan who is now adopted and the other is a Honduran child who continues to grow up with her biological family.  What I love about the picture is that just by looking at them you have no idea who's story is who's. They are three children with COMPLETELY different stories.  But here, for an afternoon, they all had the same story. They got to be kids!

What a blessing. According to Christ we are all created equal in his sight but how often does the world view it that way? How often are those who have less looked at as less than. How often have you and I looked at them with pity. Isn't that in our own way looking down on them?

In ways we should be admiring them. In ways they have every right to look at us with pity. Where we are rich in wealth often times they are rich in faith and family. While they may be poor in material possessions we are poor in spirit. Sometimes I think because of our wealth we have become blinded to the fact that we are slipping further and further away from the life of self-denial that Christ calls us to... Because everyone else has it it must be ok. 
I am not suggesting that we all go out and sell everything but... we could all stand to cut back and get a little closer to our basic needs of life. Get a little closer to the life Christ calls us to.
This amazing young man is in need of knee surgery. He has a soccer injury. For $500 he can get the surgery done in Honduras. Can you imagine... $500 for major surgery! We paid, literally, 10x's that for Maylin to get a camera stuck down her throat... Yeah... that's what I said.

Zip lining it in Canopy Land. What a treat it was to experience this with these kids!
OK... the paintball. lol We bought enough tickets for all of the older kids to play, but the point of the afternoon was for us to get to know these kids as well. The men with our team wanted to play with them but didn't want to take a ticket from a kid who wanted to play...
So our brave men took one for the team... literally.  Adam had a great idea to ask if the gringo's could go in with no guns... AKA be lame ducks to shoot at. The workers at Canopy Land must have either felt sorry for them or thought they were crazy and wanted to see the spectical. Either way 5 of them went in. If that is not 'being a man' I don't know what is! lol
Once inside Adam said "It was terrifying!" LOL
There were a lot of kids running around with guns. It was impossible to tell who was on who's team because they were all in camouflage. Adam said his only goal was to make it around the course and get out... alive. LOL
Way to be good sports guys! Those children will never forget the "loco gringo's."
We also spent time bouncing on a trampoline and pushing kids on... 
a "merry-go-round"/something that slowly spins.

This special day was also this young woman's birthday. She was turning 17. 
The little ones were tired but they were holding out for cake!
What seemed to be an ordinary "eat cake" kind of celebration ended with awesome twist. The house mother told us "We have no money for gifts. We give blessings." Each kid who lived in that home, tiny and tall, stepped up to her and individually and genuinely told her how she blessed them. It was beautiful. More beautiful than watching a child open ANY gift. We could all learn much from this. After each house member "blessed" her they all prayed over her. WOW. AMAZING and humbling to see children of all ages with such faith. I feel like this story deserves so much more but I don't know how else to say it... it was beautiful.

Here we are at the Christmas season and just this week in our Sunday School class we talked about wanting to cut back this year but...  and then came the excuses why we couldn't... no make that wouldn't cut back. I left a bit sad.
We have a lot of lessons to learn from our friends in Honduras. Way more than we could teach them.
The kids from Hogar Santidad who we met last year. Michelle this is for you! (I'll send you a higher resolution soon.)
We got to pass out shoes donated in part by Samaritan's Feet in Charlotte NC and members of Bethel UMC in Midland.
Thanks everyone for the donations. This picture says it all!
The children were extremely grateful.

That evening Wendy, one of our team members, cut and highlighted some of the girls from Hogar Esparanza's hair as well as Tara, our missionary friend.  Wendy was so generous to bring her hair cutting supplies and give the girls a little sprucing up! As the week progressed it was awesome to see everyone's talents be put to use.
What are your gifts? How can God use you to bless other's?


Cassie said...

my heart just tightened up when i saw the girl's picture with her cake. what a beautiful story...

Kristi said...

Loved it all, but my favorite is the picture of the three kids waiting to zipline.