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Day 3 – Our Last Day at CRAN and Recycling Experience by Kristi

Kids of CRAN

Kids of CRAN

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Fast Friends!

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Our boys with 2 new boys joining the drum class!

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Juan and Dante – does not matter if we are rich or poor – we all need a friend!

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This Recycler shared what he does with us!

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Izzy and Loraina holding hands…be still my heart

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From paper, to pop cans, to card board…recycling this feeds their families

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A few left over “Beanie” hats, a real treat from Jason and Sara!

 

It’s difficult to put into words what 3 days at CRAN was like.  I experienced lots of hugs, big brown eyes, happy faces, sad faces, lonely faces, arms around my legs, funny giggles from my crazy “Spanglish”…it took me back to when we were here working to bring our Caroline and Marta home (2 and 4 at the time).  Our girls had the same look, the same needs, the same longings…that longing comes from deep within an orphan child.  It’s a longing for a family (whether they realize it or not).  They long…and because of that longing, my heart longs for them.  I instantly had a heart connection with 2 older boys, that later found out had another little sister and brother. A sibling group of 4…in an institution…getting older…waiting…just waiting…and I can’t hold back the tears, because it simply is not fair.  It makes no sense.  All week we’ve been telling these kids that they have a hope and a future.  And they do…through Jesus, they have a all HOPE!  God does plan to prosper us and not to harm us…but, you watch, you make eye contact, and you have to ask yourself the question, “What am I doing to show them that hope and a future?”  It’s one thing to tell them, but what am I doing?  Am I really caring?  Am I praying for them daily?  Am I their voice?  Could I surrender everything and help them?  I know you may thinking…here John and Kristi go again!: )  With all that being said, adoption is not for the faint of heart, especially loving on kids who have lived hell on earth.  It’s costly, it wrecks you, it challenges…and a decision to say yes to even 1 child is a decision that needs great prayer and unity between husband and wife.  So, no, we aren’t adopting now, but you better believe that I will work hard for these kids, being their voice until I know they are in a loving family…so, the Gospel was shared today.  We prayed that even if just 1 of these 50, just 1, then it’s worth it!  Towards the end of the morning I had a sweet little 3 year old wrap her arms around me and whispered “Take me with you.”  Sweet girl, it’s not that easy…none of this is easy, but, sweet little girl, I will pray for you, and I will put all my Hope in the One who loves you more than I ever could!  We left, and we left in confidence, knowing these kids rest in the hands of God…and as God holds them as their Father I will continue to pray for their salvation, for them to be returned to their bio family or adopted, and I will advocate and be their voice…and I have to ask you the question.  What will you do for the least of these?  And that continues our day, because the least of these are more than just the orphan, the 2nd part of our day was  spent with the poor…

The Prado kids have stolen my heart.  They have stolen my kids hearts.  We met them at the church and engaged in some drum lessons, and had the privilege of listening to them play.  Sitting with them, you’d never know they are poor, or live on as little as $8 a day  or as much as $30 on a good day(I’m talking a family of 6).  These drum lessons and the local church is critical in their lives. If they did not have this, they’d be getting into a lot of trouble.  Most kids in the community are doing drugs into prostitution…you get the picture…but, these kids, they have Jesus!  They have  the joy of knowing a Saviour!  They do have hope…and you can see it all over them!  It was a beautiful 2 hours, and then we walked with them into their village to meet with one of their recycling friends.  On our walk, I learned that the friends our kids were running around with don’t have a whole lot of friends…because they are recyclers, they get teased at school.  Oh my heart…

We met the sweetest recycling couple who showed all that they recycled and what it was like.  Do you know that our “Rich” vises like an empty can of soda is their daily bread?  Does that mess with you at all?  It does me. What do we do with this?  Watching our kids chase eachother, hold hands, giggle and laugh…we must do something more…it’s not an option…

So we are ready to go say good-bye and venture to a yummy pizza joint.  And none of us felt right about just witnessing this and not helping them with their meal…so, off we go, our big group, some of our kids hand in hand again…and enjoy what us “rich” people can do whenever we want…eat pizza!  A sweet time with more giggles, hugs, connection…

Thank you Lord Jesus for this day.  It was heaven on earth.  Thank you for letting us see You through the least of these…I want more Lord Jesus, I want to give more…all that I am, all that I have I give to You!  Can I live that out at home? It’s really easy here in Colombia…Help me sweet Jesus to be more like you, today, tomorrow, and always…and in my surrender to You, may others be pointed to Christ!

 

 

{ 1 comment… add one }

  • Kay Weesner June 20, 2015, 9:44 pm

    Kristi…and all the rest of the 2015 mission team:
    Thank you so much for sharing your heart with us. I ache to be there in Bogota and at CRAN and with the Prado kids right along with the rest of you. They captured my heart a long time ago. Your post is a perfect word picture of what it’s like to spend time with each of these groups of kids and families. Their faces are forever etched in my mind and upon my heart. You are not alone in this heart tug placed upon you by a God who loves all of these kids so much more than we can even imagine.

    Today I was talking with someone and they shared a deep truth that they learned many years ago. They said that so many of us spend so much time planning out our lives and where we want to go. Instead, they were encouraged to look and see where God is at work in the world and get involved in that work. God is clearly at work through the ministry of Project Hope. What a privilege to be a part of it all!

    You’ve been in our prayers all week. Thanks for being a part of the 2015 mission team.

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