Monday, September 26, 2011


I have been back in the States now for a week. 

The Lord knew what He was doing when He planned for me to visit friends in Columbus before coming home. 

It gave me time to adjust back to the culture, language, and COOLER temperatures while having fun and being busy and laughing! 

I loved spending time with good Christian friends and sharing my stories with them from El Salvador! 

And it has been a smooth adjustment back to Home with my family. 

I sure LOVED seeing my sweet niece, Gracie! 

And of course, little Manny, too! 

And my sisters, mom, step-dad, dad, Torres kids, Albright family, kids at school, residents of The Etheridge House... they were ALL great to see and visit with again. It was like 3 months had not even passed. 

It was nice to go back to my home church. I was welcomed back warmly and encouraged greatly. 

And EVERYONE'S reaction when they see me is... "How long are you home for?" or "When are you going back?"

A little more confirmation to me that my time at home is more of a visit than starting my life back here.
I will not stop thinking of my babies in El Salvador.

I miss them each day.

I think about them often.

I pray for them daily. 

I can't wait to get back and work with them again.

Seeing kids like Christian react so well to some love, attention, and stimulation makes me want to go back tomorrow to continue that and see just how much more he will respond! 

He was laughing with us before I left to come home. 
I don't want that to stop.

I know it is nothing that I am doing... but the Lord...but I feel responsible to go back and work more with him and others children like him. 

The Lord has placed a passion in my heart for special need children and I want to follow it! I love working with them in El Salvador! 

I don't know how long I will be home for. I am trying to make the most of it while I'm here.

Gonna share about those children as much as possible... make some money to go back on... and treasure this time that I have with my family and friends! 

 Thank You, Lord.

Friday, September 9, 2011


There have been several times during my time here that I have just stopped and been completely filled with gratitude. 

Gratitude to the Lord for allowing ME to feel these feelings of love and experience these experiences with HIS children. 

One time was just yesterday.

There is a small boy, about 12 years old, at San Martin. His name is Christian. 

Christian is not a typical 12 year old. 

Christian has severe special needs. 

Christian is anxious, aggressive, non-verbal, cannot walk, or sit up on his own. 

Christian must stay tied at all times because he hurts himself severely. 

Over the last few weeks of my time here, Jenny and I have been going and spending time with these children that are stuck in their beds or rooms. 

We've spent a lot of time with Christian.

He did not respond to us... did not laugh when we tickled, did not smile when we sang, did not cry, nothing. 

He was completely emotion-less.

Last week on our visit, Christian was sitting up in his wheelchair. Still tied and very uncomfortable but a little different than the bed.

Jenny and I sat ourselves sort of behind Christian. 

I noticed a few times that every few seconds, Christian would turn his head, make eye contact with me, and turn back around. 

I thought that was neat that he was recognizing us. 

We took Christian outside in  his chair and walked around with him for a little while. I enjoyed it. Not sure if he did or not. I think he did. :)

Well, yesterday, Christian was back in his bed. I sat with him, patted him, sang to him, told him I loved him, etc. He made his typical "noise". It's the only thing he can do. 

It doesn't mean he's angry, anxious, or anything. It is just a noise so that he can hear himself. 

Well, as we were leaving, I kept telling Christian "te quiero mucho mucho mucho" which means "I love you a lot a lot a lot". 

And right there laying in his bed, he smiled so BIG. 

And so of course, I kept singing it! And he kept smiling! 

It doesn't seem like much from the outside, but I'm telling you, I stopped there and my heart swelled with gratitude. Gratitude that the Lord would allow ME to experience HIS child reacting. 

A child that never reacts. 

A smile.

We take those for granted. 

But yesterday, to me, that smile meant so much. 

It meant that Christian knew and felt God's love for him. 

He reacted to the love that His Father in Heaven has for him. 

He felt it. I know he did.

And what a blessing that I, who fails so many times, could be the one to experience it. 

Thank You, Jesus.

Sunday, September 4, 2011


Tonight I felt the need to update my blog...

But I couldn't find the words...
It's taken me some time to put my thoughts together.

The last few weeks have been different here. 

There have been no teams. 
No big groups. 
Just me and usually Lilly to go to the centers. 

While it's been different, it's been nice. 
Just me and the kids.
Getting to know one another. Spending lots of time together. 
Not being rushed. 
Not being interrupted. 

But it's also been a time of loneliness and a time where I've been uncomfortable. 
In this mission house alone most evenings and mornings. 
Having to fully rely on other people for everything. 
It's a new thing for me. 
Honestly, it's something I don't like. 

I've wondered... Do I love Him and the children and the calling on my life enough to be uncomfortable and lonely?

Some days I feel like I'd rather just go home. 
I'm just being honest here. 
I let *ME* get ahead of Him and *them*. 

This isn't supposed to always be easy. 
The Lord, I believe, wants to know how much I want this. How much I want His will for my life. 

Surely these kids are worth it. 
 They ARE worth it.
It makes it worth it when a kid who can't trust anyone... trusts me. They begin to let me in... They begin to open up to me.
They're WORTH it.
They are so worth lonely nights and relying on others to get me what I need.

When I feel a little lonely because I'm by 
myself the Lord reminds me of how lonely these kids must feel somedays.

Some days I completely fail at loving others as myself. 

Some days I totally put myself above them. 
But thankfully the Lord's Grace is there to cover me. 

His Grace is there to wash me clean of my selfishness. 

These kids are worth feeling lonely sometimes.
These kids are worth missing my family sometimes. 
Am I really alone anyway? 
Umm.... NO. 
The Lord says, "For I will never leave you nor forsake you."

I just wanted to be honest and share that these times here weren't all peaches and cream.

I want this to be a journal for myself. To look back and remember it ALL. Not just the pretty but the ugly, too. The parts where I completely fell on my face and messed up. But in those times also how the Lord's Grace picked me up, dusted me off, and set me on my way again to love on some more children of His. Because His Grace is beautiful. And it covers us all.

Thank You, Jesus. Thank You for these times. The times of trials and the times of happiness. For in the end I'm happy. And I'm safe in Your arms and in Your will.