Thursday, March 10, 2016

raising boys

raising 32 boys in poor rural guatemala is just insane.

-one's family is desperate for help, literally has no food.
-another got a beat-down from his dad for intervening when he was drunk and beating his mom.
-most (of the older boys) fight against drinking, smoking, and pornography.
-one is being called vulgar names by his friends because he's trying to stop drinking with them.
-one pulled out his privates to a bunch of girls on the street.
-4 are all-out fist-fighting each other.
-another is being pressured by his dad to quit school and rhinos so he can work.
-one is repeatedly crying because of his insecurities.
-many are dealing with extremely tough situations at home and asking for help.
-2 quit the rhinos.

and that's just from this past week!
robin, pato, and jake - robin's 10th and 11th birthdays

if you are wondering...  yes, it was a very normal week :)

but as insane as it is, raising 32 boys is also pretty awesome.

i love them all, but there is something special about robin, pato, and milton.  clearly, that "something special" has to do with the fact that they have practically lived with us day-in and day-out for the last 5 years.

along with eli, they are my son jake's best friends.  but they are more than friends- they are brothers.  that's why his room is equipped with 2 sets of bunk beds!

we treat and love all 32 rhinos are like our own, but most of them go back to their homes at the end of the day.  that's where these 3 are different.  robin, pato and milton usually just stay.  and its been that way for years.

they wash dishes, take out trash, and clean up after dinner.  when we go out to run errands or out to eat, they come along.  like any teenagers, they love to eat!  they help themselves to the pantry and fridge, and we love that.  they wrestle, argue, play xbox, and stay up until 2am playing soccer.  they treat luciana (our 3yr old) her like their own little sister.

we've been through so much with them.  they are family.  we love and trust them fully.

along the way, all 3 have given their lives to jesus.  we've never asked them to or pressured them in any way.  i believe they have seen what a faith-led family looks like, and they simply long for it. they have seen a family and marriage centered on jesus - and its so vastly different than what they have experienced in their own homes - that they just won't settle for anything less.

milton, jake, robin, pato - robin's 15th birthday
regarding that, milton has been really interesting.  he's a thinker.  he has told me many times over the years that he thinks about God a lot, but just doesn't buy-in completely.  i've always told him i respect that.  i've encouraged him to take his time with it all and consider the cost of following jesus.

meanwhile i've prayed for him like crazy.  "please God draw this kid to yourself!"

recently he came up to me after practice and asked if he could join the tuesday night bible study group.  "of course you can.  why, what's up?"

"i'm ready.  i've been reading my bible.  i think about what i learn in our devotions all the time. i can't stop thinking about it.  i need to change.  i want to follow jesus."

there's just nothing as good as these moments.  they make the list at the top of this page worth every second.

raising 32 boys in guatemala is just insane.


Eric Horn said...

What an awesome thing to hear about what God's doing there! Amidst all the difficulties, God always shows up!

Tiffany said...

Praising God!!! Keep shining the LIGHT!

Tiffany said...

Praising God!!! Keep shining the LIGHT!