We became older brothers and sisters to children who in most cases had no one.
by Lidia Sobor.
For two years, discouragements and setbacks threatened to squelch our dreams of a mission trip to India. But when we finally walked through the doors of the Springs of Life cafeteria and saw the beautiful, glowing faces of those precious children, we regretted every discouraging thought that had entered our minds.
Our team, comprised of six students from six countries, represented each major from Hartland College. We were accompanied by the Endres family, or “Grandma and Grandpa,” as the children fondly called them. The biggest need was for teachers, so we each took up one, two, or three classes, while Catherine Gray took up the hectic and much-needed position of a nurse.
“Every day I would hear something like, ‘Miss, Miss! I need a bandage; there’s a boil on my leg; my eye is hurting; my leg is hurting; someone just fell and hurt themselves,’” recounts Catherine.
From 5 AM to 11 PM we were on our feet—giving worship talks, teaching, grading, cooking lunch, organizing youth meetings, nursing, and helping in study hall. There was never a dull moment! A highlight was our health expo, which included prenatal checkups. The children handed out flyers to surrounding villages, and more than 100 villagers turned up!
Deep friendships were made that will last a lifetime and that far surpass a teacher/student relationship. We became older brothers and sisters to children who in most cases had no one.
Momota, a graduate student from Springs of Life School and a sophomore at Hartland, shares her story about a 15-year-old boy currently studying there: “I asked him about his future plans. ‘I have no plans,’ he told me. ‘What’s the point of thinking of future plans when there’s no one to support and care what happens to me?’ I told him that I did not have much to offer, but what I could give him I would—to be a sister to him.”
Upon returning to the States, Momota received a message from him: “I am missing you so much. You were a great blessing to me. Sister, the love you gave me, this love I have never gotten from anyone else, not even from my family. Thank you so much.”
I know God called us to India. He has called you, too, to go and help those in need. Trials and discouragements will come, but trust in Him and “He shall direct thy paths.” Proverbs 3:6. You will find that the sum of life’s happiness is a life lived for others. Only this is a life worthwhile.