Just last month our church family took time to recognize and pray for children who have been orphaned or in the foster care system. Seeing as it's only December 5, I figure it's ok to extend it a few days. Today our team (they have all been amazing) visited Xodo - an orphanage outside of San Salvador. From the time you turn off the highway and roll past the pink concrete gate there is an incredible sense of God's protective care (read Psalm 91). All of these children are wards of the state, having been abandoned by their parents and having faced some form of neglect, physical or sexual abuse. None of these children, however, have been abandoned by their Heavenly Father.
We were given the distinct privilege of painting some rooms for Xodo - rooms in need of much repair. It was hot humid and a whole lot of fun.
More than that it was an opportunity to do something they couldn't do for themselves. After lunch all we did was "love" - we coloured with love;
we did nails with love;
we skipped role with love;
we played basketball and soccer with love
and we played with play dough with love
And we ate ice cream with love and yummy toppings.
- and a whole lot of laughter and joy.
A few incredible things that stand out to me:
- the Director remembered our team from our visit 4 years ago and thanked us for not forgetting the children.
- the fact that some of these kids remember our team from two years ago.
- the big hugs and warm smiles as we said our goodbyes.
And the incredible overwhelming sense that we had just spent time in the presence of Jesus - who today had a small brown face, big brown hopeful eyes wide welcoming arms and a playful spirit - among the least of these.
Would you join us in praying for the future of these kids and for the compassionate care they receive from a great team of leaders.