Lately I adore being at the Children’s Home, but if you’ve been reading my updates from the beginning, my feelings weren’t always that way.  It’s amazing how differently I feel about it, really.  At first, I was bitter because it seemed like the most imperfect match for me and my experience/skillz, and every day I would question God’s direction.

Now, there are aspects of my service here that ebb and flow.  For example, sometimes I love that I have to walk to and from work everyday because it can be peaceful, contemplative and good exercise; but sometimes being outside in the harsh, MN chill can be a bitter experience and not peaceful at all.  Or in my relationships with my coworkers, the work I’m given to do, and so on.  All of these aspects of my job seem to roller coaster within my service experience, some give me joy and some get me down at different times…

But where I see consistent joy is in my daily interactions with the students.  These are precious moments.  Where I could barely look a child in the eye before I can now stare them down triumphantly and more importantly have sincere conversations with them.  It’s a trip when a child not only stays to hear what you have to say to them, but looks you in the eyes, too.  Even if our interaction lasts for all of 30 seconds, if it is a successful one, that is all the encouragement I need for the day.  I worry that this might become a pride thing and I’m praying that God would guard my heart, though for now it is purely a joyful thing.  By why have I begun to feel this way?  I think it simply reveals how relational we are, that as God’s creation we are made to reflect the Trinity’s perfect community, in the smallest sense at least by being talked to, encouraged, understood and known by other people.  My time with the children is so sweet and seeing them change during their treatment here fills my heart with happiness.  What was once my most fearful experience is now my joy.

I can’t help but get a lil’ teary eyed.  Thank you, God, for helping me continue to pursue these relationships even though I wanted to give up and run away so many times.  God is breaking my heart for children in ways I’ve never known. Might this open up some crazy new opportunity, one I’ve never considered before?  Like, uh, teaching?? Could reaching out to children be in my future now?  The idea is definitely not as far off as it was to me just a handful of months ago.  I can’t help but wonder with all these brand new appeals to my heart and mind.