I visited Guatemala this past week to work with some of the poorest people in the country. I will be sharing more in the coming days, but I wrote this post this morning to summarize everything that I experienced on my journey.
Imagine a building, beautiful and inviting on the outside, but filled inside with children and adults whose bodies are mangled from birth defects, whose minds are clouded with brain damage and whose families have left them because they cannot afford to care for them.
Imagine children with dirty faces and lice-filled hair, growing up in one room shacks with no running water, on a street where 20 murders have occurred in the past six months. There is no school for them, because they can’t afford to buy the uniform or books, or pay the fees.
Imagine six city blocks, each city block with rows of narrow, crowded stores painted with once bright colors, now faded and soot covered from the pollution of the city.
Only these stores are not selling merchandise. They are selling people. Women and girls wearing more makeup than clothing, aged well beyond their years, and boys posing as gross caricatures of women.
There is sorrow, but there is hope.
Now imagine holding and praying for just one broken woman who has been hospitalized for 37 years.
Imagine feeding and clothing just one child who has lived in the darkness of poverty since birth.
Imagine hugging and encouraging just one woman who has spent her life on the streets.
Yes, the need is overwhelming and I want to do more, but I did something for each of these people to show them that God cares.
… and you can do something too.
My Daughters senior class is going their in November. This will be her first mission trip. We are working hard on raising the $1500.00 + cost of getting their. But excited to hear what she has experienced.
I hope she really enjoys her trip Loyda!
Katy @ Purposely Frugal says
There is so much pain and sadness in the world, so thankful for God’s hope!! Can’t wait to hear more!
I find you very brave for stepping out of your daily life and facing the other side of this world neglected by many. It is really important to see the sorrow and to see that no matter what, those children have things that make them happy.
When I was 14 my city was severely bombed for 3 months and I remember how the small things, like a pack of cards, nice word or being able to walk further than from my street were making me redicullously happy and giving me hope. I try to keep that in mind and be gratefull for every day today.
Thanks so much for that perspective Jelena. I usually think that I have to do something “big”, which prevents me from taking any action at all. I am learning that the small things can be just as effective. One small action I took on this trip that I really enjoyed was handing out glow-in-the-dark bracelets to the children one night. It was so simple, but brought them so much joy. Thanks for letting me know that small things had a big effect on you as well. 🙂
The kind of work you did is both heartbreaking and beautiful at the same time. Having traveled internationally and working with the least of these before, I understand the emotions and processing of such difficult situations. I will pray for you as you sort through all that you saw, experienced and learned. Blessings!
Thanks Megan! Sometimes it’s good to have your heart broken.