Andy, Yeferson, Leysser, and Wendy are regulars. They come in almost every day to return and check out. Maritza and Martina love to listen to music. Elder, Denilson, Ángel, Wilber, and Urbano are puzzle fans. They have learned to ask permission to come in, to walk to the puzzle box, and to say por favor when asking for the pieces. Sometimes I make them say “please.”
Slowly but surely I am learning names. While I often get the beautiful brown faces confused, especially siblings, they are patient with me. Just being able to interact with them is a blessing. Besides the typical crowd control, I do get some one-on-one time.
Elián, a particularly rambuctious third-grader has spent the last two weeks in la dirección: the principal’s office. It just so happens that the library, for the time being, is in the same room. Hence, Elián and I have been learning from each other. As I attempt to teach him how to focus and to use self-control, he teaches me what does and doesn’t work.
One day, to keep him occupied, I told him we were going to read together. We started reading—first the side in Spanish and then the one in English. He was hooked. When the other kids told him the bus for his village was leaving, he asked if we could finish it tomorrow. ¡Claro que sí, Elián!
As much as I love the little ones, I am thankful for my time with the high schoolers. It is such a privilege to challenge them— to pray at the beginning of class, to be on-task, to learn the Word of God (in English), to be responsible by doing their homework, and to be respectful to me and to their classmates. It’s invigorating. Plus, it’s really fun to design lessons (and then revise them).
Celebrate with me:
First of all, I am very thankful that I am learning to cook. This may seem miniscule, but it was actually one of my biggest fears coming here. While I may occasionally get stressed in the kitchen, I am improving. On a greater scale, my parents are coming to visit! They arrive September 1st!
Keep in Prayer:
Since I have more of a routine now, I have been battling a sense of monotony. Please pray for me to remain expectant— making the most of every opportunity—not just with the kids, but with the Hearts in Action team as well. As God moves, we are praying to be one: united in heart and mind.
Thank you. You are so dear to me. I pray Christ continues to astound you with His love.