Monday, September 16, 2013

Memories from Merkato - Part Two

We asked the team who traveled to Merkato to share a story about their time with the children that particularly impacted them.  Here is what Jennifer had to say about a moment that she will never forget:

Jennifer with one of the kids she sponsors at Merkato

It was a tremendous blessing to be invited into the homes of some of the sponsored children, but it was also one of the hardest parts of the whole trip. On one of these visits we were taken into a home that was smaller than my bathroom back home. The walls were made of dirt and straw, and it was quite dark. There was a mother with three children living there, and they also had relatives visiting and staying with them. 

At first, I was grieved to see how these people lived. But then I noticed the mother smiling, the children giggling, and everyone seeming to be content. We learned that this mother worked in the church and had a vibrant relationship with the Lord. She had big dreams for her children and was so thankful for the sponsorship program, which had provided her child with the opportunity to go to school and with food for the whole family. 

We talked to her for a while, and then one of our team prayed for the family. As we were getting up to leave, the mother asked us if she could pray for us. She prayed a very long and passionate prayer over us in Amharic. I was very curious about the words and asked the translator what she had prayed. She explained that this woman had asked God to bless our homes, our jobs, and our families and to give us prosperity. She had also asked God to bless us with spiritual growth. I was overwhelmed with emotion as I considered the way that God was using us to help this sweet daughter of His have the things she needed, and He was also using her to show us that the richness of knowing Jesus can make even the darkest places shine with hope. I left challenged to be more content in my circumstances and with the knowledge that God has not left these poor people of His without hope. In His great wisdom, God had brought brothers and sisters in Christ together from across the world to minister to one another.

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