Kelly, an UnbridledACTS Board member, recently took a mission trip to Guatemala to work with her friends at Vencendor Ministries and meet her Compassion (International) child. Vencedor Ministries, based in the small village of El Rosario, is focused on standing with single mothers and teaching the boys about the Father who loves them. Epidemically, the boys of El Rosario are being raised without fathers, and mothers are being abandoned, left to provide for their children on their own. Their prayer is for generational change to come through raising up men of God, the future husbands and fathers of Guatemala, prepared to break the cycle of single motherhood. This is her journal about her much-too-short time there:
I can only say it with a sigh of awe and a smile on my face. While the heart in my chest is continually broken for the things that break His heart, I still am thankful. On my very first day in Guatemala I was taken to a bread maker’s shop. Hanging from his ceiling was a make-shift scale that burned words into my head that would continue to call out to me during my time there. I cannot think about my Guatemalan sisters without getting very heavy-chested. I kept thinking, “This is hardly fair. Look how I live, Lord.” Like so many here, they are fighting their way into their promise land. God told the Israelites they would have the land of milk and honey, but it would be a fight! Read the story of Jericho…His word is true!
Every situation I encountered in this sweet country is tagged with “this is my favorite moment.” Just like every one of my children are my “favorite” child 🙂 But there is one story in particular I’d like to share…her name is Norma. Norma is seventeen years old and has a one-year-old baby boy. She lives with her mother on a piece of property they own in a 12′ x 12′ dirt-floor shack that is made of tin and corn husks. Next to their sleeping area is a “kitchen.” The creosote from the stove smoke hangs from the ceiling in black upside down peaks and just underneath is…the baby’s crib. George (President of Vencedor Ministries) and I were there that day to bring Norma more yarn and talk to her about the “quality” of her last scarf. See, George has employed her to make scarves that can be sold in the States. With the money from her scarves, she will be able to feed her family every month. Here’s where it got sticky…as he was talking to Norma, we could tell she just wasn’t right. It didn’t seem like she was really following the conversation and she seemed so distracted. I asked George, “does something seem wrong, I just don’t think they’re okay.” George knew instantly…
They hadn’t eaten.
He asked them about their meals that day and they assured him they had beans that morning, but he didn’t believe it. There was a sweetness in their pride, even in desperation. Norma had been hauling wood and had nothing left in her. We were so blessed by the heart of their family that the next morning George took us to the market and we were so privileged to shop for her family. This time George “gave them a fish,” but the beauty is…he’s teaching her to fish!
As we were leaving that day, the little neighbor girl came running to give me a flower. She didn’t know that she was the flower in my eyes. In a place that seemed so far away in that moment, I thought of our women’s group back home. At Circle the Wagons, we believe in legacy. We believe in building something for your family that is worth passing on. Jesus is our cornerstone and legacy is our foundation. And God brought me all this way so, on this day, I could see a beautiful picture in living color of a legacy being built! First for Norma…but then for the sweet little flower girl who listened to every word that was said by a “gringo” who carries a back pack.
So what about the scale? Honestly, the whole time I was there I kept thinking, “Things are so out of balance. It’s just not right.” Two words repeatedly flashed in my mind. Weights and measures…weights and measures. I know justice is doing what is right; right, Lord? What, God? Why are you saying these words to me? So I dug in and this is what I found:
Honest scales and balances belong to the Lord; all the weights in the bag are of his making – Proverbs 16:11. He will balance the scale! We just need to find our purpose in Him and trust in Him.
In the words of my friend, George, “May we walk so close to Jesus that we are covered in His dust…”