Yeah, I went from days 1 & 2 to Day 6, pt. 2, and I’ll go back and fill in the rest later, but I had to get this out of me first.
We just returned from visiting the God’s Littlest Angels orphanages. I. Just. I just am not sure what to say.
Let me just stop right here to say that I am in awe of the owner, Dixie. She runs GLA and is just amazing. More on that later!
First we went to the toddler house that received most of the new children. My, oh my, were there a lot of kids there! They were not accepting more children before this, but opened their doors for this tragic situation. We were greeted by Joyce, one of the women that moved here when she was 20 and has been here for the past 10 years. She gave us some pointers and let us hang out with the kids while they played. We immediately had little hands grabbing at us to hold them but most of the new kids were sitting to the side, unwilling to play or have anything to do with us. Jacky, pictured below, was a different case; he grabbed me right away. There are few things more gut wrenching than picking up a sweet little boy and having his swollen belly meet you first. He laid his head down on my shoulder and I was done for. I held him the entire time we were there. I tried to put him down for a minute but he begged to be picked back up, so I held him until it was time to go. I spent a few minutes sitting on the ground with him until I was getting my hair pulled by all the kids playing with it. I put him down to go inside and get my things and he followed by holding my shirt tail until he hit the off limits area and waited until I came back. I picked him one more time to give him a hug and a kiss and say “orevwa.” His smile was infectious and beautiful, and I will not likely forget it.
We then took a little drive to the infant house where they are equipped to medically care for the babies. The drive itself was an adventure as the roads were too rough for the van. Some of us got into the GLA car and rode there while a few stayed in the van and Jacob and iron-woman Jamie walked/ran. We arrived to little cuties in their pajamas and met Dixie. What a woman. She spoke the truth of where the children came from and of some of the rumors she had heard but spoke it in love. Dixie told us that she wants to find the families that she can after making sure they are all healthy. Since the children are being sponsored she would offer to pay for school if that would get the children back to their families. Beautiful. She then took us upstairs to see the rooms and some of the many babies. (We asked one of the workers how many, she just smiled and said “a lot.”) Then we met Daubens, pictured below, who is said to be 6 months old, but they think is older and was the size of an infant. He is pictured below but he already looks a little better than in his picture just after a week. He was being held the whole time we were there, which is just as important to these babies who were so neglected for so long. We saw some of the other rooms and were again begged to hold sweet little cuddlers. Which, of course, I couldn’t refuse and that became a problem when we needed to go as she threw an all out fit and hung on to my leg for dear life. Yeah, I wanted to just keep her.
The one thing that stood out to me was the way Dixie was more than willing to get down in the mess of life to pull these kids out of a tragic situation and give them a future. If that’s not the gospel, I don’t know what is. It also shed light on my own unwillingness to do the same. I would sooner try and stay out of the mess, but that’s not where life happens, thats not where true beauty is, where Jesus is.
This situation is tragic and beautiful, devestating yet hopeful. Through many generous people & Jen Hatmaker and HELP tweeting and sharing on Facebook, the last I heard, over $10,000 was raised and almost all of the kids are triple sponsored! (Who says social media’s silly?) If you would like to sponsor any of these beautiful children, go here. You won’t regret it.