It's Tuesday morning. We have exactly one week left here. I awoke this morning with a stream of conciousness. Each child was passing through my thoughts and how well we've gotten to know them. We read their stories before we came, but being with them brings a deeper understanding. My heart is growing to make room for them. My affection for them has become stronger the more we've been here. As much as I will love to see my loved ones at home, I will have a piece of me left here. I'm just saying, get out the tissues, because leaving here ain't gonna be easy.
This whole experience is proving to grow me. Anything like this is going to effect someone. Today I am pondering on the things it is changing in me. Like, for instance, when I see how these children interact with one another, how they serve one another, take care of one another, how they just love being with each other and us, it makes me reflect on my own love for others. Where am I still holding onto selfishness? Do I appreciate the love of others and my love for them as a precious gift to be cherished and protected at all costs? Can I stretch myself more in order to bask in caring for the people that are put in my life?
These children love so well. Maybe it's because they have had such a lack of love, have been through such horrific loss and abandonment, that they deeply understand love and security in a way that is beyond their years. I came with a basic understanding that I am a pretty good lover of people. I enjoy people, I care immensely about those around me. Maybe I even have had a cap on how much more I could grow, or should grow in this. But being here and experiencing their love for me, it is profoundly apparent to me that I am invited to love more than I do, to give more than I think I can, to abandon more of my self protection so that I can move in God's uncontrolled, wildly unconditional love.
I thought I was coming here to give my love to children who needed it, but what I have discovered is that I have entered into a reciprical relationship of care and affection. The children tell us over and over that they pray every night for us. They prayed for me when I was feeling sick the other day. I found out yesterday that every night at 8 pm, the family prays for God to provide our church with a building. When they ask if we are coming back and I tell them we are praying about being able to, they pray for God to provide it.
Who would've known? But this is what God means when He says that we are one family of faith, globally.
Today we will be going to see some other parts of the city, a smaller market, a Buddhist temple (called a Wat here), maybe an elephant ride :), and then off to play with the kids!
Stay tuned, we hope to post pictures soon of the last few days.
May your day be filled with love.