Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Faces that Follow

Well, we are home again. The last two days have been filled with unpacking and catching up with my other life here in the States. But as I settle back in I find that there are some faces that follow me and come to mind often. I want to take a moment to introduce them to you and ask you to pray for them in the days ahead.

CRW_1968.CRW Delmi is one of the most ignored children in Hermano Pedro. From a human standard she is homely. Her large ears and bulbous nose are not exactly cover girl material for today’s magazines. Yet she is beautiful. She and I spent a large part of the day together on Monday of our trip. She went with us to the park and enjoyed a break from the prison of Hermano Pedro. At one point, I took off her socks and placed her twisted feet into the fountain and helped her splash the water. Her face lit up with a beautiful smile and she laid her head over against my chest. Delmi is precious and wonderful and she needs someone to show her that truth.

DSCF1306 Byron is an incredibly sharp young man with a wonderful sense of humor and a joy for life. This joy radiates from him despite the situation in which he lives. Dick Rutgers has fitted him with an electric wheelchair that he steers with his head because his arm control is not sufficient, and he spends every moment out of his crib speeding around the facilities of Hermano Pedro. It is so easy to see the twisted, disabled body on the outside and miss what wonderful intelligence and wit lies inside. He is such a fun person for those who take the time to know him. He needs someone to talk to him as a young man and see the sharp mind and humor that lies inside.


Louis is a little guy who capture the heart of my daughter, Krishauna, on our last Guatemala trip. He has also captured the hearts of Wanda and I. After long periods with little interaction he is slow to respond and even slower to smile. But with a few hours of attention from someone who loves him he will make noises attempting to talk, connect through strong eye contact, and is quick to smile and laugh. He has become our son and we love him deeply. Simply put, Louis needs a family (just as all the children do) to love him, encourage him, talk to him, and hold him.

CRW_1955.CRW Gloria is a beautiful eight year old girl whose smile can light up a room. Until this trip we believed, due to the staff and some volunteers, that she was deaf. However, during the time we spent with her we realized that she was startled by loud noises. She practices self stimulation by brushing her hand across her lips in a rapid manner. She too has become our child and we are head over heals in love with her. She needs a family who believes in her, advocates for her, and loves her with passion. Our arms feel especially empty without her in them.

I have highlighted four of the wonderful children from Hermano Pedro, but they are just a sampling of the hundreds of beautiful and incredible children, teens, and adults who fill their wards. I have grown to love and respect every one of them. That is why I struggle so much each time I leave them behind. When I am there I feel like a father to each of them, and when I am away I feel as if a part of me is missing.

Please join us for one of our trips to Guatemala where you can get to know these gifts from God as I have. To find more info or to sign-up go to http://www.hopeforhome.org/HfH_-_Trips.html. You’ll change lives…including your own.