Waypoints Defined

The meaningful points along life's way.

Direct me in the path of your commands, for there I find delight. Psalm 119:35

Friday, February 10, 2012

Humbled to Tears

I would like to dedicate this post to Laura and anyone else who has sponsored a child through World Vision or Compassion and has yet to meet him or her face to face.

Last June as I walked by the World Vision sponsor table at the annual LEAH Homeschool Convention, the eyes of needy children stopped me. The one from Honduras caught my eye and I signed up to sponsor Yadely. We arranged a visit during our time here in her country and today was the day we would get to meet her and her family.

We had an amazing day. Our first amazement was the fact that David woke up feeling great. He had gone to bed early the night before with a definite fever. We had prayed knowing that our plans could not be easily changed. With thankful hearts, we knew God had touched him.
World Vision has 3,100 children sponsored in the region where Yadely lives. The staff showed us the various community development projects they have worked on or are introducing.

Down a dusty dirt road among lots of pine trees and scattered houses sat the community elementary school, where we were to meet the family. I don't even know how to describe the scene that met us. It was overwhelming. The whole town had planned an event in honor of our visit. We were not just meeting our sponsor child and her family. It was much more!

They had decorated with banners and balloons and as we got out of the vehicle, they lined both sides of the walk way and began clapping and clapping as we walked in. I was humbled to tears. Here was our family, the first sponsors to make our way to their village and we were the face of all the other sponsors who have given through the years and haven't been able to come visit. It wasn't just us they were honoring, but the combined efforts of many people over the past several years as the community has benefited from the project developments. Our giving was a drop in the bucket and their gift of this day to us was memorable and impacting to say the least.

The village welcoming us
Seated at the head table to listen to the program they had prepared for us.

Singing the national anthem of Honduras

Yadely's father thanking us

Six year old Yadely dressed in her very best
giving a well memorized speech

One of the gifts we were given

A tilapia fish pond that is 6 months old
and is one of the community development projects.

Every school has a soccer field!

Passing out candy to some eager children

Yadely with her family.

Wendy and Blendy... three year old twins who usually were happy and smiling

The kitchen staff who prepared chicken soup and rice for all 100!

Yadely's father in front of his storeroom.

The entire Sanchez family

Our time with the community began with a formal seating at the head table and then the program began. We were treated to songs, skits, and traditional dances from the students along with speeches from the community leaders. Special gifts were presented and more songs were sung along with more skits and traditional dances. It was amazing to see all they had prepared for us!

After the program we took a walk to the fishponds where families are raising tilapia. Then we returned to a delicious lunch of chicken soup with rice. We passed out candy to the children with enough left over for all the adults to enjoy some as well.

The patriarch of our sponsor family wanted us to come to his house. It is an hour and a half walk from the school, but they said we could drive. And drive we did. It reminded us of "roads" in the Philippines. In the USA, we might call it a tractor lane or a double cowpath if there is such a thing. It took about half an hour in the World Vision 4 wheel drive Toyota Hilux. The best part was the kids exclamations and excitement at watching the world fly by at a grand speed of about 10 mph. I don't think it was a first, but it definitely doesn't happen often!

The Sanchez family owns about 15 acres and has a neat little spread with 7 cows, turkeys, a pig, some chickens along with fruit trees and sugar cane. We were really impressed with this hard working family. They had a two room adobe house with a separate smoky kitchen and its traditional mud stove. There was a cute hen house and a couple storerooms. And more gifts of sugarcane cut fresh from the stalk, oranges  and lots of love and smiles.
If anyone is ever feeling discouraged or unimportant, all  you have to do is sponsor a child and plan a visit. :)

These dear people challenged me to give, not just from my abundance but from the heart with love!

"As he looked up, Jesus saw the rich putting their gifts into the temple treasury. He also saw a poor widow put in two very small copper coins. "I tell you the truth," he said, "this poor widow has put in more than all the others. All these people gave their gifts our of their wealth; but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on." Luke 21: 1-4

1 comment:

  1. What an amazing experience! I never would have imagined such a welcome, such celebrating! You all must have felt a little overwhelmed, but SO glad that you could enjoy such an outpouring of love and appreciation. Thanks for sharing the venture with us, your faithful blog readers (fans)! Keep up the good work. We are all proud of you. :) Laura

    Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise; give thanks to Him and praise His name. Psalm 100:4