Paso a Paso - Day 4 [Blog]

By: Shawn Tracey

What an incredible week we have had so far!  The children here in the village are so beautiful and when those big brown eyes look at you and their shy smiles come shining through, it absolutely makes your heart melt! 

I have been part of the mission for several years now and my biggest challenge continues to be the language barrier.  I know zero Spanish other than a few key words and phrases and still feel a calling every year to return to serve these families. 

I struggle every year with being able to communicate verbally with the children and their families, but always seem to find a way to connect with them.  A simple hand gesture or demonstration can go a long way.  

I walked into a home today that had 2 small children and the older girl, maybe 5 years old, immediately started smiling at me and came over and gave me a big hug!  I was hooked!  She took pictures with me and sat on my lap for a big part of the stove install.  I showed her pictures of my family and Annalisa interpreted for me. 

It doesn’t take knowing Spanish to make a lifelong, heartfelt connection with the children here in Guatemala!  So my message to you is, if you are being called by God to serve along side the Now is the Time mission or any other mission project, but are doubting that you can make an impact because you don’t know the language, stop feeling like that!  All it takes is an open heart and sharing God’s love to make a difference in someone’s life!!!!  A simple smile, a big bear hug or making up games to play with the children is all it takes to communicate. 

Every year I leave here telling myself I am not coming back because of the language barrier and here I am again after 8 years.   God’s love shining in those big brown eyes keeps me coming back!!!