Postcards from Camichines Part IV: The Work of Beautiful Hands

It’s been so fun working in the school throughout our workday. On Tuesday, I got to work with a reading group of third grade boys. So much fun! Yesterday, I taught a writing lesson for the fifth and sixth grade kids. We learned about dialogue and action tags vs. dialogue tags. It was so fun and their energy was contagious. Their excitement for learning and for life and for each other has made this week a blast.

Learning sign language!

One of our awesome team members has a gift for sign language. She has translated for a few years in our worship services and has been down here teaching the kids some signs to go with some worship songs. They have been so excited, asking her about additional signs throughout the week.

Today, those of us working in the courtyard were called into the classroom during their music time. They wanted to show us what they had been working on all week.

They sang ‘Our God is an Awesome God’ and signed along with it.

I began crying halfway through. This was it. This was why we were here. This is why Ranchito con Esperanza exists. Seeing those kids so excited to sing and sign–showing us what they had been learning and worshiping at the same time–it was so beautiful.

These kids have been rescued and are being raised in this home that they may one day go out and be game changers in the name of Jesus Christ. That is a powerful vision.

Me attempting to get some sun in the middle of the corn pile.

Our team has been discussing how easy it can be to get caught up in the mentality of our tasks or discouraged by the monster pile of corn. (The new monster pile of corn, mind you. This one we have to go through kernel by kernel.) It’s these kind of moments that give a glimpse of what it’s all for.

Hebrews 11 talks about the great men and women of the Old Testament who put their faith in God, looking forward to the coming of Christ and never getting to taste that vision in their time. Our team is down here for a week. Such a small blip in the operations of this place and in the lives of these kids.

These barrels of corn should make a years worth of tortillas.
(The best tortillas ever, at that!)

But this work needs to be done. Even what we’re doing with the corn. By husking and sifting and sorting, we are helping them prepare and store the corn that will make tortillas for the next year. In very small, and seemingly insignificant ways, we are laying just a stone to help build the reality of the vision that has been cast for this ministry. But hopefully God will allow our stone to be build upon further.

Seeing these kids sing to Jesus, both with mouth and hands was a wonderful picture of what we want to help Ranchito con Esperanza strive for. We want to see this ministry build these kids up in faith so that they may in turn build up communities for Jesus in the future.

This week has been such a beautiful glimpse of the father. My heart is full. These children, this team, and this beautiful place are all more than I could have ever asked for. I am so grateful for the impact these people have made on my heart and am excited to see what God shall do with this place in the coming months and years.

In His name,

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