Wednesday, May 9, 2018


I would like to ask you to imagine with me. I want us to take a trip in our minds and put ourselves inside some parents here in Guatemala. For just a moment, let us walk, not even a mile, but just a few steps in their shoes.

Little Sara’s parents noticed that things were not quite right immediately after she was born. Her head was too large for her tiny body. In short order, a doctor explained to them that she had hydrocephalus, an excess of cerebral fluid that was causing her head to grow rapidly and pressure on her brain to increase. While there was life saving surgery available at the national hospital, they would have to pay for the supplies and equipment, and the shunt they needed to install costs more than six months of their income. They don’t have the money, so day after day they watch their daughter’s head grow in size and wonder how long she will live. There is nowhere to turn. No one who can help. Their extended family and neighbors are just as poor as they are. Desperation.

This beautiful little girl, Fatima, was born, and early on her mom recognized significant delays. This struck fear in her heart, as Fatima’s older brother was born with special needs caused by a genetic condition. Her husband abandoned her shortly after Fatima entered the picture, and she found herself fighting to care for two children with special needs. And she watched their health decline. This December her son passed away. In spite of her fight on his behalf, she could not save him. And now she is wondering how much longer Fatima has. Her resources are spent, and she is tired and grieving for one child lost and another slipping away. Desperation.

Beautiful Adriana was born, and at six months of age she was diagnosed as having Lisencefalia. This is a genetic condition which causes the brain to not form with its normal ridges and can cause severe cognitive delays and seizures. And little Adriana has both. Her mom has a really good job as a teacher that pays her well. She earns over Q2500.00 a month (about $345 USD). But Adriana has severe allergies that require her to drink a special formula that is very expensive. This, plus her seizure meds and diapers cost more than Q2500.00 a month. Each week this single mom sees her little girl lose weight and feels her slipping away. Desperation.

I could keep going. I have a long list of children and their parents with similar stories. In fact, the three above and an addition five were all found in the last eight days. And you can add to that list a three year old boy that I was called about last night that is dying because his family does not have money for supplies for his treatment. There are times that life here feels like a war zone, but, instead of bombs and bullets, the damage is caused by indifference and corruption. So many people die needlessly. And every day, I see the desperation.

In the midst of this, our team is fighting hard to save and improve lives. Last week we expanded into our 11th department of Guatemala. (A department is like a state, and Guatemala has 22 of them.) We are currently working monthly with over 160 families, and this is possible through our sponsorship program in which many of you participate. And I am so grateful. We are fighting, but we are outnumbered and overwhelmed.

Sometimes we are overwhelmed by the work and the long days. But, more often, we are overwhelmed by the emotional toll of seeing desperate families like the ones above. And the emotional toll of seeing so many die, in spite of our best efforts.

Last night, Wanda and I went out for a date to spend some time talking. Wanda had recognized that both of us were struggling with fatigue and discouragement, and thought we should talk it through. I, being the typical man, did not want to talk about it. So, we compromised and talked about it (because I knew she was right).

The desperation that surrounds us can be soul crushing. And we came to the conclusion that the only cure is to more intimately connect with our Jesus, the Source of all we need. So, we are committed to praying more and leaning more on Him. That will not ease the battle around us, but it will ease the battle within us.

And we will continue to fight and pray for more soldiers to fight with us. If you are interested in fighting at our sides, here are some ways you can:

  1. Sponsor a child or two. We have a long list of children waiting for a sponsor, and it includes some of the ones listed above. You can see that list by visiting Remember, 100% of your sponsorship goes directly to help the child. None is taken for administration or delivery expenses.
  2. Come and serve. We need long-term workers who will help. We know that everyone is not called to this life and ministry, but some are. We simply ask that you take time to pray and ask God if you should come. And, if He says yes, have the courage to obey.
  3. Pray with us for the children and families we serve. And pray for us as we serve.

And, while I am writing about prayer, I would ask you to join us in praying for land for this ministry. God has placed it on my heart to pray fervently and boldly for the next 30 days, asking Him for the land we need to consolidate our homes and ministry onto one piece of land. This will be Comunidad de Esperanza (Community of Hope) and will have room for lots of additional homes and ministries. But the first step is to obtain the land. We are praying for at least five acres that we can obtain debt-free. 

Will you please join us in asking God for this miracle?

That should be enough for now. Back to the battle!

Blessings from Guatemala!

Daryl, Wanda and the Crew