Tuesday, January 22, 2013


You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last...John 15:16

One of the greatest joys I have is witnessing moments.  As it says in John's Gospel, God has chosen each person to be here when they are here.  There is a purpose for each team member's presence.  Sometimes it remains a mystery and sometimes it is so clear.  It seems at times that the clarity of the moment is so crisp that the air snaps!   

One such moment is burned in my memory forever.  I can remember every detail.  It was in the spring of 2008.  We had our first youth team from Atlanta.  One of the team members, affectionately called Karen Bumblebee, was on her first visit.  She is a beautiful woman, the quintessential grandmother just like in storybooks.  One of our children gave his testimony and broke into heaving sobs as he first recounted the horrors of his and his siblings lives prior to LAMB and then as he listed the many reasons they were so thankful to be with us at the Children's Home.  He sat back down and continued to sob.  Then, he looked up.  Karen caught his eye and she motioned for him to come to her.  He curled up on her just-right lap and she held him, rocked him, and loved him.  That was her moment, the moment why God chose her for that trip.

Other people's moments vary. Last year, Carolyn and her daughters decided to sponsor Wendy.  When they told her they were her new "Madrinas", Wendy said, "Oh!  I have been praying for a Madrina for my birthday!"  Their moment.

Sometimes the moments are highly personal - a renewed faith, a new faith, eyes opened to the plight of the impoverished the world over, eyes opened to the overindulgence of their lives back home.  

The moments keep coming, some big, some small.  I had a moment yesterday.  We have a medical brigade in town.  The first day of clinics was in our school in Flor.  I was bustling around, helping the team get organized when I looked up and stopped in my tracks.  Maribel!  I ran over and threw my arms around her!  She returned my hug strongly and with love.  Next, I had to hug and get a good look at Amandita and Fernando.  Amandita has grown up quite a bit but Fernando looks the same to me, a bit taller but with the same mile long eyelashes and shy smile.  (See Suffer the Little Children and Desaparecido for the back story)   We talked, hugged, and laughed a bit and then I had to get back to work.  A few minutes later Maribel gave me a note she had written on toilet paper:

I hurt that I offended you, truthfully, I am forever sorry.  Even if you say you forgive me, I will always feel bad.  I love you.  I didn't want to hurt you but I had to... Love, Maribel 

Another hug and whispered assurance, "I forgive you and I love you para siempre."  Thank you, Lord, for that moment.  I pray for more.