Thank you all for praying for today. It's been one of the hardest days of my life. Meeting Godwin Derrick's grandmother will always be a cherished gift. She loved him so much. It was obvious her heart was breaking. She sobbed the entire time. One of his great-uncles even had tears in his eyes. This is very uncommon in Ghana. The entire meeting was almost like a ceremony. Many of the villagers silently watched as she handed him over to me then continued weeping. I was weeping as well. As I looked into the faces of the children, I realized that Godwin Derrick is probably related to many of them.
I grieved so much. The poverty was unspeakable. Many of the children were not dressed beyond underwear. No food or livestock in sight. No well to speak of. No water.
We left from there and traveled further out to the Christ Outreach orphanage. We stopped on our way and bought food for Feeding the Orphans to deliver. We spent $270 cedis on rice, oil, tomatoes, and corned beef for the children. This seemed to be a great blessing. The children were ectatic. Then we learned that this orphanage for 30 children was without water. They did not have the $40 cedis to purchase it. However, all of the children were filled with JOY and of the 8 children I interviewed while we were there, all of them quoted a different favorite Bible verse or passage. (Yes, they quoted entire passages!) I was amazed. These children needed food, and were without water yet, they were still filled with JOY! I can learn from them.
Tonight, I'm struggling with the vast difference in the world's wealth. During our devotion tonight, we asked the boys if there was anything they realized today. Braden, our 7 year old, said, "I realize how rich we are. We are really wealthy." Mason is now thankful for paved roads. (We were driving for nearly 5 hours today traveling to these two places.) Weston is thankful for trashcans. There is trash everywhere here.) And, Franklin said he thought a lot about what it would have been like if Godwin Derrick had grown up in his village. This sits precariously close to our heart because Reid and I both grieved the children who were in dire need within both of these places today. We hurt tonight. For the forgotten. The ones whom we have been to busy ourselves to remember. I pray we will never again forget. What I've experienced today is reality for most of the world. And, I've realized our family needs to take responsibility to care for a tiny part of it. More than we have. I wish I could convey all of this more clearly.
Tomorrow, we are visiting another orphanage. The one where Godwin Derrick has lived most of his short life. I rejoice because several of our friends are adopting from this home. Yet, while I am excited for these kids, tonight I'm thinking of the ones who are still hoping for a family. I think of the older boys at CKO who were adorable, but will likely never come into a home. What is their future if they have no family here?
Please pray for our hearts continue to be broken for what breaks God's heart. Please also pray for our entire family to shine the light of Christ to everyone we encounter here. Our boys have been tremendous troopers. Our two rooms have two beds total, so each night one of the boys has been sleeping on the tile floor with only a sheet under him...not a single complaint. Today, we were traveling on difficult dirt roads will bumps all the way for nearly five hours...not a single complaint. Today we were out all day so there was no lunch...not one complaint. What a treasure to see their hearts already surrendered to giving up for others. Thank you for praying.
The bonding between all of us has been incredible. Godwin Derrick seems to love us all and feels safe in our arms. He immediately stopped crying whenhis grandmother handed him to me today. A picture of peace. What a beautiful gift from God!
I'm trying to post the pictures on Facebook and have posted a lot. Our connection here is very slow, so please look at the pictures there if you can. It's difficult to do e-mail and the blog too.
We love you all and are praying for you here! Thank you for your continued prayer covering!
4 weeks ago