Monday, August 15, 2011

A Heart That's Full...

My heart is so full today. I still can't believe I'm back in Africa. Oh, how I wish you were here to see their smiles in person, to witness their tears when the Gospel is shared and to look them in the eye and remind them of God's love as they remind you of the same. 

Today's topic at the Sweetwater House was identity; understanding our position and significance in Christ. During our breakout sessions, one group decided to write down all the negative lies they have believed about their worth. A team member shared how she was moved when she glanced at the paper of the young girl next to her and realized she had written down all the same lies... word for word, without copying it. Hearing their stories, and learning their hurt reminded us that, regardless of geographic, cultural or economic differences, we each have something significant in common-- we are all broken, and in need of The Savior. Throughout this trip I am continually reminded that we are only beggars, showing other beggars where The Bread is.

Each small group made purple fabric bracelets as a reminder of their significance in Christ. Purple represents royalty. They are each a daughter of the King! (Left) The girls were given a small devotional book - "His Princess: Love Letters From  Your King" - to remind them of God's faithful promises daily. (Right)

In a slight shift of topic, I cannot end this post without introducing you to "The Kids Behind the Wall". They are dearly loved by the residents at Sweetwater and they quickly melt the heart of every one who meets them. Their name came about because they live behind The Sweetwater House {which is surrounded by four walls}. They somehow climb up the wall and we usually find their precious wide, eyes peering over the top as they giggle to draw our attention. 

The Sweetwater Girls understand first hand what it means to be hungry and in need. In an effort to spread the love and provision that has been given to them through this ministry, they are often found sharing their meals with these children. And as a side note/warning, I'd like to add that you just might fall in love with them! :)

So, without further delay, I introduce to you, the kids...

This is the moment they realized they could see themselves in my camera phone. Ah, the simple joys in life...

Aren't they beautiful?!

Remember the little girl I mentioned yesterday? The one who wasn't home?... Well, we saw her today!! Look closely. You can see her in the pictures below, with an African wrap around her head. 

The kids are giving their best "macho" pose... turned out to be a mixture of sweet, sassy and silly! (Left)  Playing Patty Cake with little Abana. (Right) She was serious about this game and she was good! You can tell in the photo on the left that she means business ;) ... I feel a rematch coming tomorrow! 

It's easy to find yourself experiencing a mixture of emotions around here. On one hand there's joy overflowing at the simple sound of their laughter, on the other hand, you fight back tears as a mother offers you her child, asking you to take her to the United States in hopes of a better life.  

Part of me wants to take all of them home. They will certainly be present in my heart as I board the plane in five days. Lord willing, I can continue to come back and watch them grow throughout the years. Who knows... maybe next time you'll come with me! 

Until then, please say a prayer for these children, for the Sweetwater girls and for our team. And I promise to say a prayer for you as well. 

Blessings Beyond Measure,

Monique Zackery

No comments:

Post a Comment

"Gracious words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones." - Proverbs 16:24