Our team served in Arenales, Gulala today. This community welcomed us with grateful hearts, willing hands, and smiling faces. Through our interactions with the community and our team we have learned that we all have different roles to play. We all have a professional role or an assigned team role, roles we play at home and other roles that God is leading us to discover. Each role is integral to the story being told and God’s big picture.
As our team members shared stories of the day, the love of God could be seen shining through the roles they were called to play. Fatherly and motherly roles were visible in Terry’s and Gabby’s stories. Terry shared about a little girl who came to his blood pressure station with great focus as she intently watched and learned how he was working. Before he knew it, she was writing down blood pressure and running the blood pressure cuff for him. All Terry had to do was put the cuff on the patient. Throughout this time his fatherly instinct took over and allowed him to share God’s love with her and gave her his cross. He went on to tell her how she was a beautiful young girl and she needed to have confidence and wait for the right guy to come along. This scripture came to life through his words to the young girl: “Since you are precious in My sight, you have been honored, and I have loved you...” (Isaiah 43:4).
In Gabby’s story she reminded us of the role of a mother through a patient who was very attentive and aware of the needs of her children. Her concern for the health and wellbeing of her children was evidenced by her attentiveness to the smallest changes in her children’s health and her persistence in ensuring that her children received the care that they needed and deserved. Gabby praised the mother and gave her a cross to encourage her to continue the hard work of being mother. Late in the day, Gabby’s translator, Mabi, mirrored Gabby’s motherly leadership with a young wife.
The role of a humble servant came to life in and through the stories of Amy H. and Sharon. During some downtime Amy H. observed Santos working hard behind the scenes. Every day he sets up lunch for us all and makes sure we all eat first. Then he makes plates for the guards and serves them. Once everyone has their food then he will finally eat. This humility is what God calls us all to in this passage: “For the Lord takes pleasure in his people; he adorns the humble with salvation.” (Psalm 149:4) Like Santos, Sharon shows her humble nature in always sharing how others shine the light of God, and not calling attention to herself.
Katey shared her love for children in her concern and comforting a child that is bullied by the other children of the community. She set an example for the other children as she nurtured this small boy. In a different way Amy B. showed her love for children through interacting and playing soccer. “…everyone who loves the Father loves whoever has been born of Him. By this we know that we love the children of God…” (1 John 5: 1-2)
Susan and Mallory have an eye for seeing the big picture when it comes to the team and the community. As they serve, they both notice how the team works together to accomplish the task at hand and the way the community takes care of each other. When a team and community come together in service, the light of Christ shines. “For God, who said, “Light shall shine out of darkness,” is the One who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ.” (2 Cor 4:6)
Cathy’s and Theresa’s stories reminded us of our families back home and how they love and support us as we go out to serve in the world. As a mother and wife Cathy received letters from her daughter and husband that touched her heart. Dr. Arita reminded Theresa of her role as wife through sharing his memory of when she received a Valentine Card on a past FOBF trip. Sometimes they can surprise us with a letter which brings joy to our day so much so that we want to share it with others. In both of these stories we heard that these notes were unexpected signs of love and heartfelt gestures that we are called to as “imitators of God.” We are called to “walk in love, as Christ loved us.” (Ephesians 5:1-2)