* Tate and Theo asking to pray at our first meal together as  a family.  It had been a while since we’d sat down together and as we sat, we reminisced about leaving and talked about the future.  I know we all enjoyed the golden moments together.


* Walking together to Theo’s first day of school and a couple of the 12 year old boys, realizing he was nervous, walked up and grabbed his hand to reassure him.


* Tate telling me he really does like living here.


* Surprising Jalmar, one of the older boys, by just showing up at the house where he’s staying.  His jaw dropped, his hand flew up to his mouth and he just started laughing in disbelief. 


* Being introduced by the directors as educators who are living here.  I know the kids trust us, but having what we said about living here affirmed by the boss was a big deal to me.  It  seemed to make it real to the kids, too.


* Reconnecting with a boy who was lost.  I wasn’t sure how that would go since we couldn’t/wouldn’t help him the way he wanted when he was living on the streets.  He has sought us out every day we’ve been here to talk. 


* Meeting the newest little guy here, Kayron. Kayron is four and misses his mom a lot.  Being the youngest by 3 years has been difficult on him, and I’m glad that Tate and Theo are here to play with him.  I’ve spent time snuggling him and loving on him when he’s sad (and chasing him down when he’s running barefoot through the chicken coop).  Today he finally acknowledged me by kissing my cheek.  It was such a sweet moment.

* Theo asking why Kayron was crying.  After I explained to him that he missed his mommy, Theo’s eyes grew wide with empathy.  My usually possessive three-year-old (who has made me the object of his affection obession) patted Kayron’s leg with understanding.  Theo didn’t complain at all about me cradling Kayron. 


* Seeing Mark reach out to the boys, and seeing them respond to his words.  He’s made it a point to greet them with masculine terms of endearment and the boys are responding to his subtle encouragement.


* Filling out a Nicaraguan Residency form at the US Consulate.


* Having to be part of the group that decides on consequences.  I’ve been so impressed by the staff trying to focus on teaching rather than punishing.


* Theo walking timidly into class for his first day of school.


And a million other beautiful, golden moments.  We are in the right place at the right time.  We are excited, scared, hopeful, joyful and tired.  We are thankful to be here, and so glad that God has provided everything we need for each day. 


**I have tried over and over again to load pictures, but it’s just too slow.  Please head over to our Facebook page to see a few.  Thanks**

About mjstearns

We are Mark, Jenni, Tate and Theo Stearns. We currently live in Beaverton, Oregon, but are planning to move to Nicaragua within the next six months. We'll be serving as missionaries to Verbo Church, a non denominational church with several Nicaraguan locations. Specifically we'll be working at Casa Bernabe, an orphanage run by the church, assisting in vocational training and transition programs for the older boys.
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3 Responses to Unforgettable

  1. Getha Tidrick says:

    Your being there is certainly God ordained. I am so happy that the boys are adjusting so well.

  2. my face is wet again…so many wonderful memories, great and small victories, answers to prayer, and evidence that God is upholding you. You are constantly in our prayers, I am confident that God will continue his blessings and direction. My sons…the educators!!!

  3. Alison says:

    What an amazing week! I can only imagine how rewarding it feels to know that you “did the right thing” by following this path you felt called to follow. That courage and faith you have shown and it will come back to you ten-fold.

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