As Eren witnessed all of the dolls arriving on her doorstep, I thought she’d be the perfect person to summarize the impact you all made. A huge thank you to Eren for guest writing this beautiful post…
The Craft Hope deadline has passed. The dolls are in. And boy are they IN! 405 sweet dollies have arrived from all over the U.S. and 12 countries including Australia, Canada, Brazil, Morocco, Japan and Scotland. They are now getting to know each other and readying themselves for the next leg of their journey to Nicaragua.
And the notes… the notes that came along with the dolls have been just as amazing as the dolls themselves. Notes from three year old little girls and notes form 76 year old women. Some of you rallied your sewing or craft groups to participate. Many of you made dolls with your children and used this project as a way to talk about poverty and those with less and how we as God’s people are in some way the answer to that calling. And some learned to sew for the first time through this project, using the creativity that God gives each of us to bless someone else. One woman made two dolls in honor or the two sons she is picking up at an orphanage in Africa this week. And one woman who thought she was not going to be able to have children found out she was expecting the day she finished her doll. She considers her doll to be a witness to her miracle and hopes that the doll’s new owner gets whatever miracle they are praying for answered as well. How wonderful in that?
We had hoped for maybe 30-40 dolls for the Casa Bernabe Orphanage. But you all blew me away with what arrived on our doorstep. We will not only have enough dolls for all of the Casa Bernabe Orphanage (leaving some with the staff for the children yet to arrive), but we also have enough to take with us when we visit a daycare and feeding center in the Managua city dump (La Chureca). So please know that the doll you made WILL find a home with a child who will love it.
In preparation for our trip, our group meets regulary to study and prepare our hearts for whoat God is about to do during our time in Nicaragua. Throughout the Bible, Jesus compares faith in him to that of a child. In Matthew it says, “Whoever receives one such child in my name receives me…” Most of these children do not smell like sweet baby lotion. Many of them have come from very dark pasts full of abuse, extreme poverty and filth. They come from nothing. And are extremely appreciative of anything we bring to give them.
Now think about it… “Whoever receives one such child in my name receives ME…” These children are Christ in the flesh. They have been persecuted as he has. They have been beaten up by the world as he has. They are Christ. So think about it for a minute. If you were preparing for a trip where you were going to meet the creator of the universe itself, what would you do? Other than go shopping for a new outfit and get your hair cut, you would probably prepare a gift. And you would probably agonize over if it was the right gift, the perfect gift, the best gift you could give. You would not offer Him the holey t-shirts we no longer wear, or a mismatched set of sheets that your grandmother gave you eons ago and are now about threadbare. Or old tired, worn out sneakers your children do not wear any longer. We tend to think that it really doesn’t matter what we give to orphans, that they will be appreciative of whatever they can get. And they are. Believe me. But as the givers, we are called to them our very best. I give my children the very best I can. They deserve my best! These children are no different. They deserve the best! Don’t they deserve the best food? The cleanest water? The softest bed? The prettiest doll? They deserve the best. Christ deserves our best!
Looking at these dolls spread out over my living room, I really want to cry. I want to cry because I know that these children will be receiving the best. These dolls are amazing. Each one of them. Every box we opened, we oohed and aaahed over the little flowers that this one had in it’s hair, or look how this one has a blanket with it. Or this one has the prettiest fabric I’ve ever seen. It is so clear that those of you who made dolls for these children, took extra special care in planning out each detail of how you would paint or stitch the eyes or accessories to go to it. They truly are a reflection of your hearts and your regard for these children. And HIM.
Thank you for your work. Thank you for your time. Thank you for showing Rina (one of the childcare workers) that her efforts matter. Thank you for showing my own children how powerful God’s people can be when focused on a common goal. Thank you for being Christ in one small way to these children. Thank you for everything friends. From the very depths of my being, thank you.
I don’t leave for Nicaragua for two more weeks, but that will give me plenty of time to pack them up and then work on my own packing. And of course, I’ll be posting while I am down there. So stay tuned, this is only the beginning of the story God is writing.
Thank you again for being the hands and feet of all that is good in this world.
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