Sunday, August 21, 2011

Bethel Week 2 - All You Need is Love (China Post 3)

Things are definitely speeding up for me here at Bethel. Our volunteer coordinator returned from vacation, which meant more work for everyone, and I was thankful for that. Aside from my piano and music classes I now teach English every day (in which the kids teach me more Chinese than I teach them English!) and work with one of the kids, Sam, on his walking. It’s been a joy to get to minister to him in that way. I’m trying to teach him that he is a strong, confident man that’s capable of great things, in hopes that he’ll begin to believe that part of his identity, despite his horrible background. It’s truly the definition of enCOURAGEment. I’ve also gotten to spend a lot of time just running around and playing with the kids. It’s exciting to see them getting to know and trust me.  It’s also neat to begin to see all of their different personalities.
By far, my favorite part of this trip has been singing with the kids.  Every night we go to their houses and teach them new songs in English.  These are always very fun, inspiring songs.  One night we taught them “All You Need is Love.”  Oh, you haven’t heard music until you have heard a bunch of children singing “Love, love, love… all you need is love!”  It has blessed my heart tremendously, because of the deep truth of that statement.  The kids have officially started to associate me with music and singing.  Whenever I’m around, they yell, “Stephanie!” and then begin singing the first bars of “All You Need is Love,” or “Tomorrow” from Annie, or “Do Re Mi” from The Sound of Music.  On Friday, one of the girls asked me to sing “Amazing Grace” with her.  She knew every verse.  It was beautiful.
I wish I had the time and space to talk about everything that I’ve witnessed God doing here.  How He’s showing me true joy in the faces of these children.  How He’s teaching me that it’s not about me, but about His glory.  How He’s teaching me to pray and to feel compassion and love like He does.  How He’s proving that the most important thing I can do is open my heart each day so that He can pour into me and then I can pour out, trusting that as I do, HE (not I) will accomplish all He intends.  I wish I could tell about how Faith is taking on new meaning to be as I walk around this school praying for the plan and the future I believe God has for each of these children, but can’t see yet.  God is just so good!  There are challenges to be sure.  There are moments ( a lot of moments) when I wonder what on earth I’m doing here, how I could possibly have anything to offer.  Some of my lessons are struggles, and it’s humbling.  Still, God is love, and all you need is Love.

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