After getting settled, we departed for a local
restaurant, complete with a Mexican menu. When we received our
food, some children made negative remarks about the food. "The
tacos aren't like we get at Taco Bell." "What kind of food is
this?" "I want a hamburger."
Lesson 2: When in another
culture, respect the culture.
Thursday: Ministering At The Orphanage
Took the kids to the bridge in Poza Rica, where the orphanage
ministry started. They proclaimed with wide eyes and exasperation,
"I wouldn't live in that filth." "I can't believe they don't have
beds." Another spoke up, "They don't have televisions. They don't
even have bathrooms." We explained that the children had been
abandoned by their parents as early as seven months old. One
13-year-old girl at the bridge had given birth as the result of
sexual molestation and was raising her newborn infant. Exposure to
this poverty helped the children know that they had much to be
thankful for. Seeing the conditions that kids in the orphanage used
to live in provided reasons for our kids to be thankful.
"This trip to Poza Rica has shown me how to be more appreciative
of what I have," said 11-year-old Ben. "It also taught me that even
if you have just a little but give a lot, God will bless you."
Lesson 3: Be thankful for your
home and family. There are many who have much less.
Later -- took the children to visit the Alpha and Omega
orphanage. The ministry there was started in 1992 by a couple who
discovered children living under the bridge. At the orphanage, we
walked up the hill to where 38 children live. There had been a lot
of rain recently, and we had the challenge of walking through 6
inches of mud on the narrow road -- without a lot of complaining.
As we got closer, we could hear the laughter and shouts of joy
coming from the children: "Hola!" "Papa Tony!" "Bien venidos!"