This is a “Cheer Up” picture for me. It was taken in our neighborhood in China when my sister came to visit. [She is the one without the sunglasses.]
Thursday night Ben and I went to a Crisis Pregnancy Benefit. Our guest speaker was a man talking about his child, who was born with spina bifida and cannot walk. After he told his heart-warming story, he showed a video. The video showed his child with his little battle-scarred body, crawling around but still smiling and having hope. I sat at the table with tears sliding down my face, because I was suddenly overcome with so many memories of the children I left behind in China. As our assignment came to an end [accelerated by our wishes to get back to the states], I was more than ready to come home–to leave behind the sadness and frustrations I had carried for almost five years. Did I tell you I never said good-bye at the orphanage? I couldn’t. I sit here crying now because I am ashamed that I didn’t make myself go and look at those tiny faces one last time. The directors came to me–at my home to tell me their farewells. They took the time and trouble to find out where I lived and travel over with gifts for me. They were puzzled as to why I wouldn’t come back and let them give me a “Chinese farewell party.” The truth was, and still is, that I was ashamed that I was taking the easy road and coming back to my cushy life in America. My spirit had been crushed and I know I needed time to heal–but how I wish I was back there, finding new ways to help the children. I could have done more, pushed more, raised more money! Bottom line is that there was more of me to give. But for now, it is too late. I’ve moved on but those little faces will not just slide into the background. Will I ever get a chance to make it up to them? Who knows. Perhaps I deserve these constant memories and aching heart. After all, God put me over there for a reason. I came up with so many excuses as to why it was time to leave China but the truth is, I should have stayed.
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