Last year I embarked on a trip that soon became one of the greatest experiences of my life. Together with a group of twelve from my church I traveled to Juarez, Mexico, a city widely known for drug trafficking and a large rate of unsolved murders of young women. Even through this dangerous situation our mission was to teach English to children there and continue the construction of church facilities during our short one week stay. During that one week I experienced something so refreshing, so inspirational its effects will stay with me for the rest of my life.
This one week we had, did not seem even close to enough time to leave a mark on these people we were living with, spending day and night with. These people, who we had come to serve, were preparing meals for us, taking us into their homes, and loving us. We had no sooner crossed the border before food was laid out before us and our ever need cared for, all without a word, literally, for they could not speak English, nor the vast majority of us Spanish.
I, with my small amount of Spanish, was able to teach a class of 40 children, ages’ four to six, small amounts of English. Soon I became attached to the children, deeply saddened when their parents came to pick them up everyday knowing that was just one less day I had to spend with them, to teach them, to inspire them.
Language just became a barrier, not for communication but for love to pass through. I love those children so much, the team I was with, and the people of Juarez, who welcomed us with outstretched arms. The love they showed each of us on a daily basis was larger than anything I have experienced here in the United States. We came from two very different walks of life, completely different in everything that we have and do, except our common faith. Completely inspired by Christian love and faith brought us closer than life experiences and language could ever dream of doing.
This is what I believe. I believe that language is just a simple barrier and no match for love and faith to pass through. To make a difference in someone’s life does not always have to mean a deep meaningful conversation. Perhaps a kind gesture, a helping hand, even a smile can grow into something so grand, as inconceivable as to change someone’s life. This I wholeheartedly believe.
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