She's almost nine...just two months shy.
She's beautiful and sweet....and imperfect. But she surprises me everyday with her heart.
Last night as we sat around the computer looking at pictures of Lima and Pichanaki and even some of the pictures that our missionary friends had sent us of the projects we are going to be working on, she sat in silence. At first I thought she was sad because we were going to be gone for so long. She wouldn't make eye contact and when I finally caught her eyes she held her breath that way we all do when we don't want to cry but the tears are brimming in our eyes.
I asked her what was wrong and all she could do was shake her head. By this time she was wiping the tears from her eyes and taking quick little breaths to regain composure. We continued talking and looking at the pictures and finally she couldn't take it anymore and began to openly weep. Then it hit me. She understood. She finally realized what we were going for...She GOT it. She had been looking into the faces of people who she has never met, whose worldly possessions could fit in one room of our home, who don't have roofs over their heads or name brand anything and who don't know about Jesus....and it made sense why her mom and dad were going.
"I understand now, mom". She said.
"How some people don't have stuff. How some people need houses and food and how we have everything we need and more. How some people haven't heard about Jesus".
I wish I could have frozen that moment forever. By that time tears were streaming down my face. She's not too young, I thought. She's NOT too young. It's clicking....all these things that we've been trying to get her to understand. All the trips to Wal-mart when we don't buy her toys and she gets mad and we try to explain that when we don't buy toys sometimes it is so we can give to someone who has nothing.....it's all starting to click....and it's beautiful.
Immediately she began thinking of something that she could send to the kids she saw in the pictures. She went and gathered all her small stuff animals and brought them to me and asked if I thought I could fit them in my suitcase to give to kids we see along the way that maybe don't have one. Then Tucker got on the bandwagon and gathered cars and trucks that he wanted to send. And I really don't care if it cost me $30 to take an extra suitcase to Peru....these things are going with me. These things that represent something greater than things....A heart of a child that is beginning to understand bigger stuff than stuff.
They're not too young.