I left home thinking that I was going on a mission trip to impact people’s lives, and came home realizing that it was actually my life that was profoundly impacted.           

I was so excited about going on this trip, especially when my team was informed that the majority of our time would be spent with kids and Vacation Bible Schools. Kids have a very special place in my heart.

My family has been a foster home for over 40 children over the past 3 years. It had made my heart smile to pour love into every single one of those precious lives.

Love can hurt sometimes, and even though I wouldn’t change the attachments I made with any of our kids, it is never an easy time when we have to say goodbye. No matter how many times we’ve had to do it, it never gets any easier.

When we first arrived in Guatemala, I thought I knew a good amount of Spanish and would be able to communicate decently, given my two years of high school Spanish. I soon realized, however, that I knew next to nothing and saw the large language barrier between me and the Guatemalan people.

Throughout the numerous Vacation Bible Schools my team put on during the course of our trip, I spent the majority of my time communicating through smiles and pointing. The girls and boys, however, could care less what language I spoke and were just so ecstatic that we came to see them!

I loved every minute of it, and left a piece of my heart with each and every one of them.

While I was in Guatemala, I heard from my family that the three brothers, who had been placed in our home for over 16 months, were leaving the day I got home. Again, my family had to start the sad process of losing another member of our family. I had a hard time after hearing this news, and had to ask the Lord to keep my mind and heart focused on what he had for me in Guatemala.

Later that week, on the last night in the country, my entire team was sitting in the hotel during our debrief and Miss Deb asked us to write down something that we learned/something that we will take away from this trip.

At that moment I burst into tears because God spoke to me and made me realize that love has no language. THAT is why my family does what we do. THAT is why God lead me to Guatemala.

The kids apart of our VBS may never remember the words we said (or didn’t say), the story we told, or the crafts we made but they will always remember the love we shared.

All those precious kids that were placed in my family’s care and then left may never remember our house or even our family but they will always remember the love that we gave them. That is something that someone can hold onto forever. THAT is why it’s worth it to go through the heartbreak when a child leaves our house, or when my team and I have to leave those kids in Guatemala and travel 1,000 miles back home.

Love is stronger than anything I can ever say or ever will say.

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