Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Her name is Laina

The little girl on the left is Laina. She is 9 years old and she too comes from a very strong Hindu family. In fact, during the 15 day Christian “boot” camp we were running her father decided that he was not thrilled his daughter was attending. He decided to get the village involved and they held a 48 hour Hindu festival right in the middle of the camp. Not like we could hear the music from a distance and it was a little creepy, I mean smack dab in the middle of the campground where we ate and played…literally music blaring all through the night so this village could worship the goddess of wisdom. All put together by Laina’s father. Not only was he upset that she was attending, he also is a raging alcoholic (along with her grandmother), and chose to come down to the camp at night completely trashed where the children slept and would walk around screaming and yelling out for her. We would sometimes have a time of sharing where the kids could talk about prayer requests and things that are going on in the camp, and on more than a few occasions Laina would get up in front of the 100 other youth and share that her father and grandmother were drunks and asked if we could please pray for them. I know she loved the camp but what I think she loved even more was being away from home for 2 weeks. Not having to deal with drunken family members. Not having to be yelled at. She could be a kid. She could laugh and sing and learn dances. Laina raised her hand on one of the last nights saying that she had made a first time commitment to follow Jesus that week. I know as I sit and listen to the rain thinking about this precious girl that I get to go home to a safe place where I am loved and appreciated. Where no matter what religion I choose or don’t choose to practice, I am respected. I can’t say that Laina has that same freedom. This little girl stole my heart.

1 comment:

Jenna Moorea Schuette said...

Kelly, thank you for sharing these stories. What precious children. I can just imagine the lessons about loving that Christ is teaching you and Justin. You both are in my prayers.