Last Wednesday I met Angela our 6 year old child that we sponsor through compassion. When Emma was born Dave and I decided to start sponsoring a child through compassion that was the same age as her so that she could journey with them through her life. Our first child sponsored was Leon. She was from Haiti. 3 years ago we were notified that she was leaving the compassion program because her family was moving. So at that time we picked up Angela as our sponsor child. We’ve corresponded back and forth through letters and tried to get know her as much as we could a 4 year old child. So when I knew I would be heading to Haiti this May I contacted Compassion to see if they could arrange a visit with her. I was pretty doubtful they could since she lived on the other part of Haiti that I was going to be at but it was worth a try. Well they made it work out and here is how the journey went that day.
Wednesday morning Angela and her aunt woke up early and loaded on a bus for a 6hr ride to come see me. With them traveled the project coordinator from where Angela was from. The plan for them was to meet us at Wahoo Bay a beach place near where we were staying. We would hang out for a few hours and then they would head to PAP to spend the night in a hotel and then take the 6hr journey back the next day. So as our team pulled up at Wahoo Bay, they were already there waiting.
Let me just say that I did not know what to expect. I was nervous about the day just because. I just wanted Angela to have a good time and to have a good experience and of course I felt I had a lot of expectation on my shoulders. I just did not want to let her down. After all at the end of her journey was only me waiting to greet her and spend some time with her. I had brought stuff for her. I spent a lot of time before my trip gathering things for her. A backpack, clothes, candy, a doll are just some things to name a few. And we got some things for her family. A beautiful tablecloth, a crank radio and flashlights etc. After spending a week in Haiti I was having those thougths of feeling like I got her all the wrong things. After seeing what little the children have there I was wishing I had gotten different things for her. I was just praying she would not be overwhelmed.
So back to when I met her. I waited for her outside her car and there she was. This beautiful girl that I had only seen in pictures. She was dressed in a pretty dress and new white socks. And after being in Haiti for a week I knew that whoever got her ready to see me had made some sacrifices in getting her these items.
So how did it go? I think it went well considering she had never seen a white person … in person. She had also never been up to the Ocean before and that was a first for her as well. But as I met her I showed her the photo album I had brought of Dave and the girls and then took her to the store on sight to help her pick out a swim suit so that she could go to the beach and pool that was there. For the first hour or so she was in shock. She did not talk much. I took her down to the Ocean and she started to cry in fear. She told the translator it was too loud. Again first time she had been to the Ocean. So we went up to the pool instead and stuck our feet in the water and then ended up spending time coloring together. She copied everything I drew and then began to open up more. By the end of our time together she was finally smiling for the pictures we took.
As they prepared to leave her aunt began using the translator to thank me. She went on to tell me how much God would bless me for all that I did for Angela that day. She told me thank you for giving Angela hope and support. She prayed for God’s blessings on my life. That was a hard thing for me to experience. Because I am richly blessed and they have nothing and to sit and be told to be blessed even more was humbling and also made me sick inside if that makes any sense at all.
It was a once in a lifetime experience for me. One that will be embedded in my heart forever. I’m glad for people like Angela in our families life. The compassion worker said that Angela would likely remember this day for the rest of her life. I just hope and pray that as she remembers that day she does not remember me or my white face or the things she did but that she would remember the love of Christ that was shared between us as our 2 worlds collided for just a simple moment. And I pray that she takes from our time together Hope and Love. That is all I know to say. Not sure if I even did a good job explaining all of that.