Sunday, November 15, 2009

the longest blog post ever

The days since my first blog post have been full. Full of wonder, brokenness, pain, joy and much of God's majesty. I'm not sure how to describe it here in an internet cafe, in the center of Harare, surrounded by people. There is a lot of noise in my mind.


Felix is a 15 year old boy who lives in the St. Joseph home for boys. He goes to school. Our missionary volunteers are working on making over a room in the home so have been there several days painting. My job has been to sand and paint some benches. Felix spent one day helping me. I cannot begin to describe how sweet and gracious the teenagers are here. No one is spoiled. No one has an air of arrogance. Felix and I talked about everything from movies, music, life in America, Jesus, etc. I finally got up the nerve to ask Felix about his long he has been orphaned. He was given up when he was one year old because his mom and dad had a fight and got a divorce. He has an older brother whom he can reach by phone. His mother is alive, as is his father. He knows where his father is but his father won't tell him anything he asks. 2 weeks ago he learned that his mom is nearby and wants to see him. I asked Felix if he would like to see his mom. Felix replied, "I would love to. Oh I would really love it. I would love for her to say something sweet to me so that I can forgive her."


Victor is another boy from the same home as above. We went by a few days ago to help the boys study and do homework. They are preparing for their exams. Let me just say praise God they are in school. Last year, there was no schooling. Can I also just shout Amen that God led me to the only boy not studying math?! Hallaluia! Seriously, we were meant for each other. Victor had the assignment to compare and contrast 2 poems. They were both about love, but very abstractly. I read the poems and nearly sank in that they were so confusing. I nodded my head and silently prayed, "Please God don't let me have come here for nothing today! I want to help him. I want to help Victor. I don't want to be useless." I opened my eyes and we began to unpack the poems. They really began to come alive on the page. I'm nearly crying now. I got to dig deep down in the well that I have in me and share some of my own love and pain experiences to help Victor understand the poetry. All I can really say is that is was amazing. God did show up. Victor and I connected. Thankfully, Victor has a family in the rural areas. He doesn't get to see them much, but he has them. He loves them. They love him. It is poetry.

A note about camp sponsorships:
I still have to organize 8 more sponsorships. They will be for the St. Joesphs boys home, so not all of the kids have been identified yet. Please pray about this. I am stressing. I need it to come together by Tuesday so I can fulfill my promises.

The greatest joy of my heart:

Earlier this week I got to go to the school that his been started this year for the teens who I fell in love with last year. The teens that really rocked my world, and permanently reshaped my heart. The home where Sarah Tendai lives, the one who sent me the letter. They are all in school now, and because of the work God is doing in their community, the school has expanded to include the local rural community kids too. I cannot tell you how much these kids want school, love school, and appreciate school. It is no wonder that they are so incredibly smart. They are brilliant really. Really. So....I got to grab hugs and kisses from so many of them. We planned a "Christmas Party" for yesterday, Saturday....just for the orphans in the home. And we partied like you have never seen. Yes, we had food and even delicious desserts. We prayed about 5 or 6 times. The kids sang and danced for us. They even honored me personally....yes they all remember me from last year. Ask me if my heart and head swelled up......massive! They had a boom box. One of the boys....I admit, perhaps my favorite...his name is Boaz. Boaz could be a superstar. He is gorgeous, smart, funny, always smiling, talented. He's a major MESS! I love him. He made me dance. Let's just say they might have been a little surprised that this white girl had some moves. I'll admit. I got down. I G.O.T. D.O.W.N. Happiest time for me. We were there for several hours. I think I hugged them all over and over. Precious grabbed me many times with her arms fully embracing me. She told me she loved me in her sweet Shona accent and she told me she thinks of me like her mother. And yes I got to spend time with sweet Sarah Tendai. There just are not words to describe my heart for these kids. They are between 13 - 18. There are 15 of them. I'm just at a loss for words, but no shortage of heart beats. I'm in love. That is all there is to it. I must come back. I must.

I revealed the surprise that they all will go to camp. I thought the roof would cave in. 3 of them cannot go because they will be taking national exams. But they understand. The other 12 + 4 of the community kids will go. I paired them each with a sponsor and told a little bit about each. Julie get my funny Boaz. He is special. I let God control who would be whos sponsor. The rest I'll have to follow up with when I get home.

Please remember to pray for the other 8 that need to be identified. I am worried about this coming together.

Power outages are frequent. I've had exactly 2 painfully cold showers. The food has been wonderful. My sleep is not so good. I really only have 2 days left here in Harare. 2 days that I want to matter. I want to see Boaz and the gang again. I'm praying about this.

On Wednesday, I will be on a 12 hour bus trip to Victoria Falls. Please pray for this. I will be uncomfortable, hot, squished in and I don't want to get robbed. I will spend Thursday all day at the Falls which I expect to bring me to my knees and to tears. I will start my journey home on Friday. I will arrive on Saturday. I hate flying. I'm being a crybaby. I hate it.

Today was church....and it was very good. It is a wonderful community chruch that focus on life groups, just like Cross Point. Today the message was about the purpose of the life/community groups. To fellowship, to live in the WORD, to be filled with the SPIRIT and to ALWAYS be on MISSION. Girls of mine....I think we have some work to do to be on Mission. I think we must start filling our empty seats. Please be praying about this.

Jesus is here. These people are so beautiful. The ones who know Jesus worship Him so openly. It is so freeing, so amazing, so perfect. The 2 week life I have here is perfect, despite the troubles. I miss my kids and Joe.

Dear Asher and Shawn....thank you for sharing your mommy for the mission of Christ. He loves you. I love you. And thank you Joe for letting me run away. I'm know I'm a bit of a wild one at times. Thank you for never trying to change that about me.



Tracy said...

I'm so excited for you to be there! Thank you for sharing your stories about Felix and Victor--- you know they will always remember the love you have shown them! Praying for you!---and everyone God touches through your beautiful heart on this trip!

Sarah said...

Thank you for sharing these stories. Oh, I want to be there! I wish I could have witnessed those kids' excitement about going to class.

I love it that they appreciate school so much. Oh, how our children take education for granted.

Can't wait to see pictures. And video? I hope so.

Anonymous said...

Oh My Goodness... I love those kids & I love your heart for them.
Praying for your safe return.