Oh, how deeply I have been blessed! I don't think I half realize just how deeply blessed I am most days. You might think I mean material blessings (which I won't completely argue), but that's not a blessing. The blessings I see are in the people in my life, the opportunities, the lives that touch mine everyday. I got letters from my sponsor kids today. That combined with something I read recently got me thinking on the blessings in my life and the lessons I can take from my time in India. (No, I didn't sponsor any kids in India, but I don't think their situations are all that different from the kids I am sponsoring)
For instance, these kids from the youth hostel/orphanage where we stayed. Do you think they complained over the fact they only had a few toys to share? No, they just made up games and had their fun. They soaked up attention, and were full of energy.
Or these kids from a school we visited. They would have considered themselves blessed to be going to school, even without chairs or toys.
Here are some girls from the nursing class I taught. They were so excited to have their picture taken!
More and more, it's becoming obvious to me the ways that we can bless each other every day. Now, it's true, just pulling out a camera MAY have caught the attention of a number of the people in the pictures above. But having a small or large impact on their lives is (I think) what really made them come forward wanting their pictures taken, wanting our attention. The first picture was not taken on our first day, or even first week. Those kids had seen us give our testimonies, help hand out water at mealtimes, and help out at their study times. We contributed to them, and they wanted to be around us. The second picture, all we had a chance to do was see the school, and Kristen got to speak (through a translator) to them about herself. We shook all the kids hands, and when Laurie's camera came out they all came running (my picture is after we got them all calmed down again... and then they were all clamoring for the camera again... oops!) The final picture, as I mentioned, is girls I taught in a nursing class. Those specific ones wanted a picture with me because I had been a part of their lives.
Not that I'm saying that my taking pictures of kids has to do with their being blessed. But I think their view of blessings may have a lot more to do with the people in their lives, and the opportunities they have. And I think I need to step out and be the blessing in someone else's life more often. I need to step forward and pray for someone, even if it scares me. I need to make that phonecall even when I'm tired. I need to stop myself and try to say something positive or encouraging to those I see everyday. Because slowly, slowly, I'm learning that the more I step out of my comfort zone, the more I am encouraged in return.
I need to remember that even when "my guest house" doesn't look fancy or special, it's still shelter, there's always something I can offer someone else, even if it's just a prayer or a kind word.
Thanks to all of the blessings in my life!