This past week will be one of the most memorable weeks of my life. I knew the trip would be hard as I have always held a special place in my heart for children but couldn’t imagine the affect it would have on me.
The last night in Transnistria Tony, our team leader, asked us what was the single most memorable moment was from the week. Well when it came my time; I copped out and said “tons, to many to just say one.” Well I must admit that even though this was mostly true it was probably more due to the fact that I thought I would break down in an embarrassing, blubbering cry if I had to talk much longer.
Well now that I have had time to stop and ponder, I must say my most memorable moment was when a group of the older boys that had been helping us (these guys latched on to me all week) were going through my phone and looking at all my pictures. They were asking tons of questions about my family, hunting and America.
At the beginning I was proud of showing off my two year old son but then as they were scrolling through my 400 something pictures, I quickly felt guilty. I realized that they may see my house or the size of my T.V or just in general how much I have compared to how little they have. By no means am I considered rich in the States; I live in an averaged sized brick home in an east Texas suburb, but to them I might as well have been a millionaire. In that single instant my eyes were opened to how materialistic we Americans are.
I wanted to do something. I mean I had brought several hundred dollars for travel money and my first thought was to give it all to them, but that was not what we were there for. We were there to share the love of Christ through our bed building and the time we spent with them. I really struggled with guilt after this because of how many worldly possessions I have and how little these kids have, and I had grown to really care for these kids and wanted to give them riches beyond their dreams.
It’s funny how if you look in the Bible, God will always show you an answer, whether you are looking for it or not. Towards the end of the week I had woke up early before everyone else and had decided to go down to the hotel lobby and work on my devotion for the week and came across what the true meaning of riches is.
“Blessed is the one who finds wisdom, and the one who obtains understanding. For her benefit is more profitable than silver, and her gain is better than gold. She is more precious than rubies, and none of the things you desire can compare with her.”
“My goal is that their hearts, having been knit together in love, may be encouraged, and that they may have all the riches that assurance brings in their understanding of the knowledge of the mystery of God, namely, Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.”
On the last day we were able to hand out bibles to these children. The look on their faces helped me to realize that we were able to give them something that was better than gold and more precious than rubies; the word of God