Today is the last day of the trip that changed my life 8 years ago.
Today is the last day of the Northwest Bible trip to our village.
Today is the same day that left me wondering 8 years ago what God was going to do with my life in Guatemala.
Today is a very important day for many people who are having to say goodbye.
For some, it could be life changing.
Today is a day where we have to say goodbye to that special kid that God placed on our hearts during the week of "Camp Hope".
(Or if you were me, the thirty special kids... i was obsessed with many. I was always the last one on the bus, and I was always sobbing, and now I live here. Be for-warned!)
Even though we did not have to say goodbye to these precious kids today, John and I had our fair share of tears this week.
One of our most favorite kids in our teenage group, Carlos, saw us cry on multiple occasions, and like any good teenager would, decided to make fun of us all week.
(He saw us crying along with over 130 other people which is always super fun and never embarrassing after you are a hot sweaty mess who has not gotten more than 5 hours of sleep each night and you are running around like a chicken with your head cut off. RUN ON SENTENCE. SORRY MOM.)
Reader: Oh Sarah. You have so many other run on sentences. This is not the only one. Oh I am so sorry that you think it is...
We joked about our crying all during the week.
Tonight, my heart felt like it was being squeezed too tight, and the lump in my throat grew to an abnormal size.
Tonight I watched this strong young man turn to mush as a mom from Northwest Bible hugged him and said, "I love you so much."
She didn't even know if he would understand her.
(She apparently did not realize that I am an amazing English teacher, and that he did in fact know that phrase along with many many others.)
She did not know that those words would have such an impact on him.
He would not let her go.
He hugged her again.
I watched from inside the building, and when he came in, I saw the tears rolling down his cheeks.
I, like any good missionary would do, made fun of him.
I told everyone that was still in the room and within earshot, that he was crying like a little girl.
I pretended to cry with him in a mocking matter, and after I was done making him laugh, I hugged him probably a little bit too long for his comfort.
Because, while I am the jokester, and like to make the kids laugh, I hated that he was crying.
I hated that it meant so much for him to hear the words, "I love you so much."
So many of us hear those words so often and take them for granted.
How many children out there need to hear this?
This simple, yet powerful phrase, brought this boy to tears tonight.
And while I hugged him and worried about him on the long drive back to our house, I also thought, "I am going to make so much fun of him this week!"
But I will be doing something else too.
I will be letting him know from now on that we love him.
It will not be a phrase that brings him to tears anymore.
He will hear it often.
And if he cries every time he hears it, I will have that much more ammunition for making fun of him. :)
We love you so much Carlos.