|This is Elsie's house|
Those of you who know me....know that I am directionally challenged. (I fully admit that)...however once I learn a place I will never forget it. That Saturday afternoon we walked the slender street to her house God burned that image in my mind. I believe it was Tuesday or Wednesday morning I wanted to drive by for Mark to see where this beautiful little girl laid her head every night. We both were just heart broken.
I went to bed thinking how sad it was for her and her family. But at the same time they had a kind of peace on their face that just showed happiness. See they do not know any other way of life so the one they have they live to the fullest.
|Elsie and her momma Maria holding Micah|
When I opened my door and walked to the front of my car, I greeted her with .."Hola mi amor" (hello my love") she shouted "Hola Hermana" and ran over to me like she had not seen me for 5 years. It was so sweet! Then her mom came out to greet us as well. They both held and loved on Micah and kissed his little head and feet. We chatted for awhile and then we shared how God had pressed on our hearts to help them with a few groceries. We pulled them out of the car and you could see just how thankful and grateful "Maria" (her momma) was. I began to compliment her on her nice looking garden of corn and squash. She relpied with this, "in 4 months the corn will be ready for harvest please come back and get the first fruits of our garden" That just broke my heart. One it takes a long time to grow corn and you need a lot of water and a ton of plants to receive a large enough yield but she was offering me not just what was left over but the first from the harvest. What a gift she was extending to our family. What little she had to offer she was willing to give up.
(That makes me think about our lives for Christ...do we offer him the first fruits of our life or do we just settle for giving him what is left over. I know that I fall short here sometimes not giving God my best.)
We left that day excited to see that God does in fact have a plan for them and invited them to church once more.
Laurie and I both had tears in our eyes as we drove away and Whitney asked if that was their garden shack? Laurie replied: "No Whitney that is her house." Her eyes were opened that day to how life is not the same for everyone.
Sunday morning we head to church and start to prepare for the service and I see a glimpse of a pony tail that looks familiar. The girl was standing by the nursery door so I went over like I was checking on Micah to find that Elsie had washed her hair and bathed that morning and put on her very best dress. I was so happy to see her and she hugged me and held my hand. She did not want to let go at all. Mark and I teach children's church and so she sat with Dave and Laurie as well as Taylor. It was probably her first time in church because she did not know that you sit still, and don't talk etc. However, she has never been taught any different. There is no doubt that God has placed her in our lives for a reason. We are very thankful that she was able to come to a church that preaches the Gospel. After church, she ran into our classroom and hugged and loved on us both until it was time for her to catch the bus. Please pray for Elsie; pray that she will continue to attend services, come to know Christ as her Savior, and for us to see God's plan.