The little letters at the top of my screen are flashing 9:59 PM and we are finally letting the day draw to an end here, there are still more things in today’s list of things to do than have been checked off, but we have just got to call it somewhere or we will never be ready to rise and do it again tomorrow.
Today was big, and good, in so many ways. I cannot settle on the right words to describe it.. Overwhelmed…Thankful….Hopeful…Happy… We had the second of three inspections (Yes, at first we heard it was only going to be two, but there was one person who is coming alone next week) and it went very well! Our project is the exact model of what the Ethiopian government calls their “first priority” for orphan care models. For each of the three officials who came to visit today, this was the first time they had seen a “family style” orphan care project in real life. The response was overwhelmingly positive! And I think if we were not so beat down tired from getting ready for these inspections we would be jumping up and down and praising God right now!
My soul is doing backflips, but my body is plastered to this bed.
In the end there were no changes that any one of the officials asked for! They only had positive things to say, and all of them went back to their offices and wrote letters of support for our project. I can hardly even find words to explain how valuable these letters are here in Ethiopia. Big stuff!
Jessie and I have been so overwhelmed with all of the generous support and kind words that we have been getting from all of you. People who we have never even met are opening up their hearts and giving big to help Bring Love In, and the money squeeze that has been going on while we set up the project. We could not be more thankful for all of you. In a way this is the most humbling experience we can remember. We keep both saying to each other; “Can you believe the amazing people that God has gathered together to make this happen?” And the answer is No. Neither of us can believe it, or understand the bigness that is God.
Two days ago I watched as the new house mothers for our first two homes came into the Intake center with all of their personal belongings in tow. They had finished their training and were getting ready to move into their new homes, each of them had big happy smiles on their faces, ready to take on this new mission in their lives. I kept going in and out of the room grabbing a stack of donation boxes and taking them up to Jessie who was doing the most incredible job organizing the donation room, and I stole glances at these women as they sat in the plastic chairs that line the wall in the living room that we have set up as a makeshift office, you could almost feel the joy emanating form them. These four women have been through some of the hardest things in their lives, and today they were starting anew. It was beautiful. I wish I could have gotten inside their heads and felt what it was like for them. After a few moments, Marshet came in and told them that she had keys for their new houses and that she was going to walk them over and get them settled in. I did not go with them because we had to keep working on things at the Intake Center, but it was a moment in time that I wanted to share with you, and to thank you all for making this happen. Although we always talk about the orphans who are being given families, this means so much for the widows who will becoming their new mothers as well.
Soon, a deeper more well written post, I promise. But for now, we just want to write and say thank you, and even though we are tired and worn thin, God is moving, and it so so amazing to think that only one more inspection stands in the way before we get to start creating new families. (This last inspector is rumored to be a wonderful person who will likely be thrilled with the project that we have created… But please do pray that this goes well)
Ok. Off to bed.