As I’ve shared with friends and family about my time in Romania, it always goes back to the kids. While I have had lots of experience with kids, the bonds that were formed were different than I’ve ever experienced. They were based on facial expressions, physical touch, and sometimes a feeling that God truly brought us together on purpose. I will never forget the faces of these children, and I hope to see them again some day. I want to share a few with you all.
On the right is a sweetheart named Rebecca. She was full of energy at times, and calm other times. This picture was taken one day while Rebecca was standing with me for a long period of time, just hugging me. I noticed this with a number of girls. One girl had me ballroom dancing with her, and wanting to go on a special walk just the two of us. They didn’t want anything except love. I didn’t even need words; they just wanted me to be there. And so I was. It broke my heart and filled me with joy all at the same time.
To the left is beautiful Denisa. I didn’t get to interact much with her throughout the week. But on the last day, I will never forget the looks she kept giving me. We kept locking eyes, and I got the feeling that she cared about me just as much as I cared about her; as if she was heartbroken we had to leave, but had this mature peace about it. I can’t explain this connection no matter how hard I try, but it was quite the blessing.
On the right is an older girl Victoria, showing off her pillow case that she made
with us in craft during VBS. Victoria was a people person and seemed to make friends with everyone she met. I could tell she had such a caring heart. She gave me and few of our team members bracelets to remember her by.
This is the cutest little peanut on Earth, Vali. I will never forget the day we taught about the Armor of God. We used a whole costume of pieces of armor, and let the kids try it on afterwards. Vali got a hold of the belt and put it on, and tucked the sword into it. He was walking around with the sassiest look on his face, showing everyone. He was so happy with himself, (I think he knows his cuteness factor is off the charts). He was such an animated kid, always making faces like this, and at the same time was so relaxed and not bothered by anything it seemed. I will always cherish the moments God gave me with this son of His.
Turns out sometimes you don’t need the coolest toy, a bounce house, a slip n’ slide, or even the words to make a kid laugh. Sometimes you just need to be there. Even just for brief time. And trust that God will use just your presence in a mighty way.
A part of me kept saying, “I can’t believe we just left them.” But God kept answering, “But I didn’t.” I am so thankful for the time I got to spend with these children, and I will always be praying for their situations. I pray that God would protect them, provide for them, and ultimately reveal himself to them, and that they would discover their identities in Jesus Christ. And, most importantly, despite what the world says, that they would know how much they matter to the King.