Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Down by the river....

This weekend our friends introduced us to a family living in the riverbed. Maria and her husband Cosimero had a cinderblock house built on the wrong side of the river wall. Under normal circumstances, say 98% of the year, the river is a hundred yards away from their house. Cosimero works in the river - he harvests and sells rock and sand. A couple weeks ago, the rains came down and the floods came up. The raging water washed all the sand from under the house and it came crashing down.

You can see the crumbles of old house in the foreground.
The new house is just wood, lamina, chicken wire and fabric.

A blessing: the family had evacuated and no one was injured. They have built a temporary home out of lamina (corrugated metal) and wooden boards. The one window is covered with chicken wire and there is no door, only a blanket to keep out the cold. There are three beds for their family of six, in a room that measures about 10 x 12 feet. I remember hearing a statistic one time that said most of the world lives in less square footage that most Americans have in their SUV cars. I believe in this case, it might be true. So what would it be like to live as a family of 6 in my Toyota Land Cruiser. (I'm pretty sure someone might die, not saying who, but someone would.)

This is why Redeemer's House exists. We are compelled to come alongside this family, bearing the light and the hope of Christ. A few of us had the opportunity to sit with Maria in her home, drinking coffee and listening to her life story. I was humbled beyond measure. Before we left, we prayed together. She thanked God for sending us to visit, it increased her faith to know that He hasn't forgotten her. Now my faith is increased - to see exactly why God has called us to this work among the poor.

Climbing a tree at the edge of the river.

We visited Maria again the next day to bring a few needed items - not much - just some beans, rice and apples. We also brought some used but still very good shoes for one of her girls. There have been times when I have asked the Lord, "Why did you choose me to come here and do this?" Now I wonder why I get to do this. What did I do to deserve the privilege of serving here? But that is the paradox... I didn't do anything. I didn't earn this privilege, I simply said yes when He asked. What is He asking you? Are you reluctant to say yes? 

After we visited Maria, we found some kids playing in the river. We went and played for about 2 hours with some of the cutest and sweetest kiddos. I watched them climb trees, play soccer, jump on an old mattress spring, pick flowers and jump rope. My kids were reluctant to leave. What joy and blessing to be used by the Lord. Seriously, if the Lord is asking you to do something you aren't sure about, JUST DO IT! The prize is blessing and glory and honor to the one and only true King!

Irma the monkey!

I went home with loads of fresh picked flowers. So precious!

Mis amigos!

1 comment:

  1. Love this and love you guys thanks for saying yes