Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Have you hugged a bear today?

Have you hugged a bear today? Well the children in Swaziland, Africa have! How fantastic to see such joy on their precious faces. As I wrote yesterday, Gregg, Dan and Chris snuck out of the service at St. Paul's Methodist to meet the kids at the weekend carepoints. Chris had several bears that were made and loved on by the FUMC-RR Children's Ministry summer VBS program and so while the children waited in their long line for their meal Dan, Gregg and Chris handed out "Hug Jesus" bears. Check out their sweet faces...

Gregg writes: "There were probably 40+ children from the local community congregated at St. Paul's Church for the weekend carepoint. During the week, there are two neighboring carepoints, unfortunately they shut down for the weekend. St. Paul's Church picks up the slack by filling in to feed the children on the weekend. These kids line up with their bowls around 10:00am and wait for the food to be ready, which was 12:30pm this day. "

Dan doing what Dan does... He was helping her pack her food in her baggie. Many of the children collect food to take back to their families. They are not sure if the children get to eat any of it. Gregg writes: "After the children ate many stayed and played with their "Hug Jesus" bears. Gregg was told this was the longest time that anyone had stayed with the children. They got a kick out of the video camera and seeing themselves on video too." :D

Okay, shhhhh don't tell but the children have a special nickname for Chris... White GoGo Yup, it is true she is pretty special to these cherubs.
Gregg taught the kids 2 American hand signs...
Gregg writes: "Notice the large cooking pot in the background? (last picture) There's another Gogo (grandma) who cooks at the carepoint who could EASILY beat me at arm wrestling... These pots are 150lbs and the lids are 50 lbs. She throws these around like they were nothing. When I tried to pick up the pot, she had a good laugh at my expense... (anyone smelling oranges? I love the lessons of humility!!) Many have scabies, lice and are malnurished. Many are HIV+ - You just want to love on them. They love their Jesus Bear's from FUMC-RR Texas! I finally taught this little guy the thumbs up! He was my favorite! He stood in line for a 2nd bear! Look how beautiful this little girl dressed up! (below) She was so cute! most don't have shoes and the ones that do are tattered - see the boy behind her... His foot is sticking out sideways."
Beautiful children in a peaceful land who are trying to survive as best they can with the resources they have. I adore children. They grow us. A lot. They teach us how to love and have joy. Jesus has a special place for children; an unconditional place. They teach us who God is. Oh, and they make life....... better.

This first day was pretty full for Dan, Gregg, and Chris. I believe they just touched the hand's of God and the story continues...

Peace and blessings,


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