my life songs

this is caquito (ka-kee-toe)
October 7, 2010, 4:17 pm
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Weston took this picture when he was here to set up the computer lab.  Caquito attended the classes.  I think they were practicing typing here.

I don’t want to tell a lie, but I believe Caquito is 18.  Okay, okay I know I’m still considered a young person… but Caquito inspires me because he is a youth with aspirations, dreams, hopes, purpose, and he lives his life as such.  In my time here I have been repeatedly humbled by the person that he is.

If I remember right, the first time I met Caquito was back when we first opened up the Makarios school.  He was one of Camille’s students the year before, but had been excluded from the new program because he was too old.  Camille and Cristina, his teachers, had been good friends to him, so he would come by and visit them at the school on occasion.  I remember offering him food once and he turned it down.  He was “fasting” he told me.  I was just so impressed by a 15 year old (at the time) that would consider it necessary to fast.  It made me wonder what kind of faith he had.  I later learned that he had also had been a student of Brian’s, the first teacher to ever work with Makarios.  Brian taught Caquito English.

I sometimes wonder when I leave here what will happen to those that I have loved, where life will take them.  Knowing Caquito gives me hope.  I am not the first of “gringos” to love Caquito, nor the last, nor am I the only one currently.  (Right, this isn’t about me.)  And before any of us loved Caquito, Jesus loved him.  He called him out.  He put people in his life that would bring him to Jesus.

Caquito is a light in his community.  He loves to play basketball.  Kendall goes once a week to play with him and some of his friends.  They’re not all Christians like Caquito, and I’ve watched him reach out to his friends.  He told me once that he wants to be able to learn a lot of languages to be able to preach the gospel to all kinds of people. I was inspired when he told me this and wanted to give him my bilingual Bible so he could start studying in English as well.  He told me he already had one, and then quoted me some scripture in English.  I am humbled.   He speaks Creole, Spanish, English, and is learning German.  I am humbled.  How many 18 year olds do you know in the States that are studying other languages to be able to preach the gospel?

This summer Caquito interned with Makarios, helping out with summer, soccer camps.  Sharla, the Executive Director of Makarios, stopped by our house the other night. (She’s usually in the states doing all that directory type stuff, she was only here for a couple of weeks.)  Caquito was over and went outside to talk to Sharla.  He thanked her for the opportunity to work over the summer, that it was his first job, that he was able to buy his school supplies for the new year, (he goes to public school in the morning and is finishing up high school).  He thanked her for the opportunity to get to work with other people that want to serve God.  I am humbled.  He spent his summer earnings on school supplies and a new uniform, and paid his tuition at language school!

I pray for Caquito… that he would get to attend the University, that he would find a good job, that he could provide for his poor family, POOR family.  I pray that God would bless him, that he would have blessing from the Kingdom of Heaven.  I pray that he would show his community what it means to LOVE the Lord, and not just be or say that you are a Christian.  Please pray for Caquito too.

I found this picture of him from back in the day… chillin on his bike in front of the old school house where Camille taught.  It is oh so far that we have come.


maria’s song
October 5, 2010, 3:04 pm
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i know i haven’t been the most consistent with my blog.  the truth is i just don’t find my life that interesting anymore.  i’ve been here in the DR long enough that it just feels like life, and not an adventure.  maybe what i do is interesting to some people, but i’ve decided to take a break from blabbing about myself.

in my time here i have been truly loved, inspired, and encouraged by some beautiful people.  it would be a shame if i kept these lovely people all to myself and didn’t share them with you.  i came here to serve the poor, and they became community and friends to me.

so the first of testimonies will be maria.

this is a foto of maria and i on my birthday.  she made me sancocho, a dominican soup.  she’s my best friend here, but she also takes care of me like a mama, “mama maria.”  the last time i was back home i had gone to the doctor.  i had some test results come back abnormal, so i had to go to the doctor here to get checked up again.  doctor’s visit can be uncomfortable as it is, plus being here, and not having my mom.  (i know, i’m 25 and i still want my mom.)  maria took me to the doctor, told me everything was going to be okay, waited with me for hours, and then made me lunch afterward.  AND everything was okay.

maria lives across the street from me where she has a salon.  (i get my hur did there sometimes.)  a few years back her husband died.  she had three young boys to take care of and had never worked before.  she got a scholarship with Compassion to go to beauty school.  she did so well at beauty school that that asked her to stay and be one of their teachers!  she turned the offer down because she wanted to be closer to home.  she converted the front part of her house into a salon, and was able to work and be at home to take care of her boys.  years later now, her boys are grown up, two of them study at the university, and they are also some of my greatest friends.

maria has faithful clients that come in every week.  she’s the best on the block.  she continues to love and take care of her family and ALL her neighbors, including me!  she makes me lunch every day, brings me coffee in the morning, and makes me tea when i’m sick.  recently she’s been sleeping at the house of one of our upstairs neighbors.  the woman’s husband disappeared and maria doesn’t want her to be alone at night.

i don’t even want to think about the day that i will leave here and not live across the street from maria.  she has taught me what it means to love your neighbor as yourself.  pray for her and her family.  they get along, but the struggle still.  pray that the Lord would continue to provide for them.  AMEN

October 4, 2010, 11:52 pm
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nowadays the “developing world” means you still stand in line at the bank and there is no online bill pay.  so i went to pay our electricity bill today.  the line was really long.  tomorrow is the due date, so everyone was paying their bills.  PLUS, they were having to write all of the receipts manually because their system was down.  AND, there was only one person attending the customers.

so i stood in line for what seemed to be an hour.  everyone was complaining about it being so hot and asking why the fans weren’t on.  THE POWER WAS OFF!  the electricity was out at Edenorte.  the ELECTRICITY companies’ electricity was out.

e’ pa’ fuera k vamo
October 4, 2010, 5:56 pm
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this little guy got to go with his mama, rachel to canada.  so excited!  praise Jesus for answered prayers!  also, keep me in your prayers.  i’m flying solo here while rachel is gone.  things have been running really smoothing in the art co-op.  the extra work we put in is paying off now.  but i’m just starting to realize that we will need to be gearing up for the next four months of work as soon as rachel comes back.

remember negrita?  pray that we can sell the car.  i have to get a few things fixed first.  it’s just been something pressing on me lately.  pray, pray, pray it will sell.