This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not
that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. 1 John 4:9-10

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Beautiful Smiles

Over and over again God shows me his beauty.  Everyday I see kids, helpless kids, barely getting by.  Some have a mother or a father absently 'parenting' them, some have a grandmother or perhaps an aunt helping take care of their minimum needs, and some have nobody.  But their smile, oh their smiles.  There's such a precious look of joy that fills their faces, even despite their hardships, that is so contagious.  I can't explain it, but it's beautiful.  Now don't get me wrong, these children are not continually smiling.  In fact, at first it's hard work to break their seriousness.  These kids are used to playing tough.  It's part of the survival skills they've learned living on the streets and in the slums.  It really is a survival of the fittest in their world.  But once you've broken through that protective layer you get to experience a truly beautiful thing.  A heart longing to be loved, a child wanting to be held, a soul yearning to be protected.  A little being excited to embrace all that you will give.  This precious smile, that's what captures my heart.  It's almost as if God is smiling at me from a spot deep inside that child's soul.  I love it!

Today we had the opportunity to take Sister Freda's "kids" to play in the pool at the Kitale Club. These 7 children are orphans that Sister Freda is raising.  I could spend hours trying to describe the gentle beauty of Sister Freda's heart.  She's Kitale's Mother Teresa, and her heart is so in tune with loving Jesus and loving others.  Her life work has been to help and to heal people in the name of Christ.  She has a hospital faithfully dedicated to caring for the poor, a school that educates needy children, and a college of nursing working to raise up a generation of healers.  To spend the day with her children was as much a blessing to me as it was to them.  I've never seen kids so excited to play in a pool.  Perhaps I've just never considered how uncommon it is for children in Kenya to see a body of water, a crystal clear body of water, so big.  Their joy was uncontainable, which made for a very fun day at the pool! I look forward to spending another Saturday morning with this special group of children!

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