Age does not matter…only desire and faith

 

As she listened to the stories of children requesting their “own” books at the children’s home her heart was touched. She knew from that moment on something had to be done. I mean, she had so many of her “own” books. She knows the value of having your “own” stuff and how impactful it would be if these children had things of their own. It could provide a sense of value, a sense of autonomy, a sense that there is a God out there the does care about their wants and needs.

Usually when someone walks up to you to explain their desire of helping these vulnerable children, it is sad to say, but it does not come to fruition on our end. You do not lose hope that God will not send someone, but you do become a little skeptical. When God places a girl in your life like little Jacqueline, that skepticism turns to how optimism and ultimately how great God is.

This girl was only 14 years old. Most kids her age, if not all, only are thinking about snapchat, instagram, and what movie they will go see next. But, she was eager to find out exactly what the kids wanted and needed within the children’s home. It was explained to her how beneficial it would be for the children to not only have their own book, but also to purchase a certain kind of test to identity education weaknesses. Again, we were a little skeptical because there are not too many 14 year old girls out there willing to pay for something like this themselves. Oh yeah, forgot to tell you that, she wanted to raise this money on her own like a champ.

Her parents were happy to hear this, but also did not know how she would get this done.

When missions guests come to Back2Back on a mission trip we do a nightly debriefing session that teaches people to process, pray, and think about what God is doing during that week. Ultimately the goal is for people to go home and to continue their eager drive for the orphan and not to crash and burn because the high is over.

This girl would not bow out easily. She made a plan and stuck with it. When she returned home she sold baked goods at EVERY possible Home sporting school event she could. She laid out the items and with vigor told people about the books, the tests that were needed, and the impact her trip made on her life. Through that first Fall season she raised over $700 and then because of her advocacy she raised another $800 through generous donors. She raised more money than was originally requested.

The next visit she had to Monterrey we took her around and showed her the impact of her efforts. Usually we do this with adults, but here we were bringing this now 15 year old around and showing her the impact that God has made through her strong desire to fight for the vulnerable children in this world.

I am so excited to see how this girl will grow and what big things God will do through her.

Missions guests, especially the young ones, often ask me if I have any ideas on how they can sponsor a child, get involved, or in what ways they can raise the money. I provide some ideas, but I usually share this story and then go on to say, “It is not how old you are that matters, it is how big your desire and faith are.”

Below is a Thank You note from one of our Volunteer Coordinators on how deep the impact went from this 14 year olds desire to help,

We are very happy that the kids were able to experience receiving a totally new book for their literature classes in the library, and the kids were even happier! They were able to write their names inside the cover and know that after they finish reading that book with the volunteers, it will not become a part of the general library, but a part of their personal library- the book is theirs!

 
This has helped them a lot because they are able to value and take care of the book that belongs to them. But the best part is that they are able to follow along while another child is reading and they even can correct each other when one of them messes up. We were able to make this a reality in Bethany, Casa Hogar Douglas and Casa Hogar Del Norte.
 
We were also able to purchase a psychological test that schools generally ask for when a child has learning difficulties. It was very expensive to pay someone to apply those tests each time, but now we, along with some local volunteers who are psychology students, have evaluated 3 children and we are preparing to continue evaluating children who need it. The great thing about this test is that it allows us to specifically detect what the children need in order to achieve learning. We are then able to tell the local volunteers how to best help those children.
 
Sometimes we don’t know the impact that it can have when we choose to obey God’s voice when our hearts tell us to do something, but we are honestly so grateful for people like you who have sensitive hearts- not only to the needs of others, but most importantly, sensitive to God who directs us in how to serve others.”
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