Summer is drawing to a close here for the children of CDB as they prepare to start school this coming Monday. I don’t think any of our kids would actually “admit” they are excited for school, however, you can tell that they are.
The summer was fairly busy, though pretty relaxing as well. Most of our children got to spend some of their vacation with family and relatives. We only had a few missions teams serve with us this summer. My wife was able to go on a missions trip to China with a church from El Paso. Ayantu and I flew up to Seattle for our annual golf tournament in which we raised $6300 for the orphanage. And then, we met up with Jackie as well as all my siblings and their families for our family reunion in Lincoln City, Oregon. What a great time that was.
When school finished in July, we had 14 children in the home. Now with school starting we have 18. The Lord was faithful to bring us 4 more children to care for and minister to, 3 of those having come this past week.
Some of you might remember Valeria, the sweet little gal with a squeaky voice that lived with us last year for 6 months. Her mom decided to pull her from the home after Christmas break. Honestly, we were all heartbroken and missed this precious gal very much. What made it even harder was the fact that Valeria wasn’t even staying with her mom. She was living here in town with her grandparents in horrible living conditions.
I hadn’t seen Valeria since she left until Jairo and Jessie’s wedding in June. Valeria came with her grandparents and greeted me with the biggest hug ever. Towards the end of the wedding, Valeria came up and whispered something in my ear. I couldn’t understand at first but then realized what she was saying…”can I please come live with you guys again.” My heart was overwhelmed with emotions and all I wanted to do was take this precious girl home with us. Sure it was justified, right? I mean, her mom was neglecting her again, her living environment was very unhealthy, it all made sense to me.
However the Lord quickly spoke and reminded me that as much as I wanted to intervene, I needed to “be still, and know that He is God.” He was in control and would work something out.
Well, the Lord was faithful (as always) to do that. We received a call from Valeria’s mom asking us to please take her daughter back. She realized she made a mistake taking her out of the orphanage in the first place and once again was not in a place to take care of her. Of course we said yes and Valeria is as happy as she was when she left…if not a little bit more. It is SO wonderful to have her with us again. Valeria will be starting 1st grade on Monday.
We also received a little guy named Edgar. Edgar is 5 years old and has a mom and dad. They are actually a really neat family and we are so thankful the Lord brought them into our lives to help and minister to. Their story goes like a lot of the other stories. Both parents are working hard to survive and due to their long work days, 6, sometimes 7, days a week, they aren’t able to nor do they have anyone else to care for Edgar. Edgar’s parents are thrilled that he will be able to get an education (starting 1st grade on Monday), learn about the Lord, be cared for in a healthy environment, and that they will be able to visit or spend time with him on weekends.
The 3rd child that came to us is a young lady named Carolina. She is the younger sister of Erasmo and Maria Ana. We have known her since our very first trip up to their little village in the mountains, 3 years ago. Carolina finished elementary school in her town and her mom now wants her to continue her schooling along with Erasmo and Maria Ana. Carolina is very shy, but is already coming out of her shell. She is a huge help with things around the house and is excited to start school. She will start 7th grade on Monday.
So, including our daughter Ayantu, we now have 19 children in the house. WOW…sounds a little crazy even as I read and write it. Yes, it seems a little overwhelming right now as we change up room arrangements, build new beds, buy more clothes, food, etc. But what an absolute joy and honor to help care for God’s precious children.
Please, please, please, continue to pray for us, especially over the next week as we get all 19 children settled in school. Please pray for Valeria, Edgar and Carolina as they adjust to their new home. Also, please pray for continual finances. With the additional children as well school supplies, uniforms, back to school clothes, etc. that need to be purchased, we are trusting and excited to see in which ways the Lord chooses to provide.
We are also in great need of sponsors for most of our children. I will be sharing a bit more about that here in the next few weeks regarding ways that you can partner with us and a child here at the orphanage.
Thank you for your faithfulness in taking the time to read the things the Lord is doing here!