One of our interns, Anna Glick, wrote a beautiful blog about her time here in Guatemala. We’re happy to share it with you!
“WELCOME TO MY LIFE”
Every day looks a little bit different here in Guatemala, which I kind of love. Flexibility is key in any ministry, but cross-cultural ministry requires an extra helping of patience and the ability to go with the flow.
Our week here always begins with worship. We start the week by coming together and praising God for everything that He has done and is doing in each of our lives and the lives of those around us.
After that our week as interns involves several times throughout the week of meeting with each other and staff to delve deeper into discovering our calling, identity, and more about orphan care. Scheduling, planning, internship meetings, shopping for community meals, and discipleship all come into the picture as well. I have also chosen to invest two afternoons a week in Spanish tutoring.
Living in community means that I live with eleven other people. I share a room with three other women (four, potentially, if we have a guest). Almost every night the six of us take turns cooking dinner for each other. We all share the responsibilities of the cleaning and maintenance of the house. Everyone has permission to speak into each other’s lives and give feedback when necessary. Almost everything is shared (although some things are precious. Like Nutella). I have little to no personal space. One of the motivations for being a night owl is the benefit of alone time when everyone else has gone to bed.
Community stretches you. It pushes you out of your comfort zone. It asks you hard questions and waits for an answer. I love it and I hate it.
Three days a week I also go to Casa Shalom. We arrive, sign in, and head up the hill to the houses we are all paired up to volunteer in.
Kaci and I are in the Baby House. We knock on the door and are greeted by the house moms first with, “Buenos Dias” closely followed by a chorus of, “Ana! Kachi! Ana! Kachi!”
We then have the privilege of loving on, playing with, and corralling twelve little ones – all two-years-old and under.
We hug them and give kisses.
We play with foam blocks to work on fine motor skills with the littlest ones.
We attempt to get them to crawl through a pop-up tunnel (most of them are scared of it).
We have long conversations with the three-month-old to maintain and encourage eye-contact.
We encourage them to try new things.
We tickle and tease them.
We celebrate like crazy with them when they finally do go through that scary tunnel.
We pray for them and over them, even though they’re too little to know. We pray for healing, restoration, and redemption for the pain, abuse, neglect, and trauma that every one of these precious little ones have endured. We pray that they would overcome the developmental and psychological hurtles that they are faced with. We pray for the behavior that often speaks to the situations they came from. These children are survivors and fighters, many of whom had to learn as toddlers to be resourceful and independent. Some need help learning how to be a child again.
Its important to remember their identity is not what happened or was done to them. It’s easy to want to place a victim mentality on them. They are so young and have been through so much after all. But their true identity, the one that they will need to be taught and continually affirmed in, is that they are loved, cherished, seen, important, intelligent, capable, and incredible sons and daughters of the King.
That’s the highlight of my week. Going up the hill and knocking on that door.