Two years ago we built in an area where we had the privilege of meeting some amazing families. Today was so emotional as we returned to see how those families are doing today.
Theresa is a single mom with 3 children. She is meticulous and even apologized that her house could not be more tidy and was so thankful for our visit. Her house was spotless and and her pride of ownership was so evident. We had the chance to hear how her life has changed since having a new home. Despite her husband leaving her, she said that she was " strong and brave" and was working hard to pay for the electricity on her own. Her house provided her with a means to protect and care for her family. She spoke through tears how she wishes she could help others to build houses so that they could feel blessed the way she has, but must stay home to care for her children. She still has the strong sense of community she displayed the first time we were here when she cooked for all the workers with the resources that were pooled from neighbours.
Reyna is another life worthy of the title "strong and brave". Returning to visit her answered so many of the questions I have had each time I come and go from ElSalvador. Two years ago we saw briefly that she was an amazing seamstress, I mean truly talented. However, she had nowhere to work without a house to sew in. Her dream was to be able to sew as a means to support her family. Today we visited her in the house we built long ago. Inside was a table with material and a measuring tape. Against the wall there stood a sewing machine that she had worked hard to buy! Best of all, she showed us the things she had made, beautiful dresses to sell within her community. God gave her a house so she could live out her dream!
It was clear that the dresses were far more valuable than the amount she was getting for them in her own village and she was asked why she doesn't sell them for more. Her answer was clear and simple. Leaving her home to sell her dresses although for more money would mean sacrificing the time she knew was important in raising her children.
I really feel that God used Reynas story to speak to our team and to me personally. He showed us just how big He is and how important we are to Him. He knows our hearts desires. He had a plan for Reynas life and as a team we were only a small part of it. God was there before we arrived two years ago and he was still there when we returned. I can only imagine what he has planned for these women because they are strong and brave and trusting in Him.
We were asked where we saw Jesus this week and how has it changed us. There is no question that I saw Jesus at work here today in the lives of these women and in this moment I really feel that God was affirming my life through Reynas. I'm forever questioning our decision to stay home to raise our children. Through Reynas story God has again reminded me that I am right where He wants me to be, not to be tempted by what the world has to offer, but to be patient in seeing His plan for our lives to unfold.