You never know the full extent of how much a life can impact you until you see it first hand. If you asked me a year and a half ago that I would embark on a mission trip to Guatemala and that it would impact not only my Christian walk but change my future, I probably wouldn’t have believed you. Yet, here I am a year later after returning from a week spent in Guatemala with some of the greatest people I get to call my spiritual family.
A year ago this week, I was standing in Zacapa the sun beating down on me drenching me in sweat just by standing there. The temperature reached into the hundreds and our faces remained reddened from exhaustion. The exhaustion was only physical and even them when you’re in the midst of a village washing feet and giving bags of food out to the families, the last thing that’s on your mind is how blistering hot it is out.
I have never sweated more in my life than I did in Guatemala. I remember the second day we were there and went on a tour of the campus. Every stop wrenched my heart closer to God. Seeing the love on the elderly people broke my heart in the best way possible. The baby rescue made me realize how fortunate we are for all that we have here in the States. The Orphanage is what broke me. I’ve always been a lover of kids and seeing them happy and smiling.
When the bus parked and the doors were opened, I was the first one to step off. I still remember seeing his chunky body running towards me, arms stretched out a toothy smile spread out on his face. I didn’t know the little boy’s name but that didn’t stop me from falling in love with his quiet demeanor as I held him in my arms and squeezed him tightly in a hug. He found my sunglasses fascinating as he removed them from my face and shoved them onto his face upside down squealing with glee. I held the little boy until he squirmed to get down and then scampered off to another person. Still, that simple human interaction between the two of us had captured my heart.
During our stay, that was the only time I saw him, but his elated face never left my mind. I knew I had to do something for him. Through World Help, I am now able to sponsor the little boy, David Kenet. His picture remains on my fridge as a constant reminder of that day and I pray for him every night. Over the past few months after returning from Guatemala and sponsoring Kenet, I knew my career path that I was currently in wasn’t what I wanted to do. After prayer and counsel, I realized my heart was in writing and going to Guatemala.
I didn’t think I would be able to return there this year with college and a job. Still, I prayed “Lord, if there’s a will, I know you’ll make a way. But help me be content in Your answer.” Up until three weeks ago, God’s answer was no and even though I was disappointed, I had a peace about it. Then God sent me a curveball. Fast forward, three weeks and I am returning to Guatemala this May in a matter of a month.
May 17-24, I will be in Zacapa, Guatemala and I couldn’t be more excited. I’m overjoyed to be returning and seeing what God has in store for me this trip. I know His plan is infinitely greater than mine could ever be.