Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Dia Tres- Dulce's Casa

After breakfast ("desayuna") and a time of worship for the little ones, Leah, Monica, Dulce and I headed out for a visit to Dulce's home. My stomach was in a bit of a knot from a mixture of excitement and nervousness. Its an interesting position to be in, going to visit the home of a child who's education you are helping to support. I wasn't sure of what to expect, I wasn't sure of what her home would be like, how I would react to seeing the very core of the ghetto.

Dulce held my hand on the walk, stopping and waiting very patiently as I paused to take photos of the sights on the way. She quietly rattled on a few times, which I mostly didn't understand, so I just smiled, nodded and said "si!" Its the best cop out answer ever. If you just pretend to know what's going on, no one else will ever know that you are completely clueless.

We stopped at a black gate on the walkway. Dulce opened it and walked through, letting her tiny hand run on the solid concrete walls of the house next door. Up another small walkway and we were at the door of her house. She knocked timidly and waited for it to be opened. Her mother opened the door with an enormous smile and a greeting of "buenos dias!"

We were given quick tour of the house, which consisted of 2 small bedrooms and the kitchen. Dulce slept in one room with her parents, and her older brother and sister shared the other bedroom. On Dulce's bed was the monkey that I had given her the day before. Her mom informed me that she slept with it in her arms the previous night. We headed up to the roof, where her mom brought up an orange drink for us. The view from the rooftop showed most of the ghetto. The house was located up towards the top of the ravine and looked down onto the other homes and trash heaps.

As a surprise to me, Dulce's father showed up to meet me. He greeted me, telling me how blessed he was for what I was doing for Dulce and for the love I was giving her. I didn't know what to say besides, "de nada" and "gracias tambien". It was just so humbling.

Dulce and her father snuggled for a good portion of the rest of our visit. Considering that most fathers are absent in Guatemalan culture, it was an incredible sight to see. Even in homes where the father are present, there tends to be a lack of an affectionate relationship. Seeing him hugging her and the look in her eyes when she looked at her father... Amazing.

Before we ended the visit, I had the greatest honor of my trip so far: I was able to pray for the family. Standing in the kitchen, laying hands on Dulce and speaking the love of Christ over the family was phenomenal. It was evident that this family relied completely on God to get through every day by their response to the prayer. I am so incredibly blessed to be able to experience that kind of bond with a family to which I have a unique tie.

As we all hugged goodbye, Dulce's parents asked when I was coming back again to visit. They said that I was welcome in their home any time with open arms.

It was just so, so, so humbling...


Faith said...

I can't tell you how excited I am for you. What an amazing experience this trip is. (I'm a little jealous). I love you!

Juli said...

I have to 2nd what Faith said.

Bill Cummings said...

Bethany, what a beautiful experience! It is such an amazing thing for me to know that the people who are sponsoring these children are actually getting to meet them in person. This is life-changing for you and for Dulce and her family. It's something none of you will ever forget.