Naiveté is a Dangerous Thing

Hi, my name is Caleb and I am interning with Ben and Carlos this summer. I am from Colorado, but currently living and studying at Seattle Pacific University. I am in Magdalena for the summer to serve Love Guatemala, Ben, and Carlos to the best of my ability. I plan on making lifelong relationships, learning and understanding Spanish in an immersion experience, and better comprehending what it takes to do long-term mission.

It is only day two on the job and I have already seen so much. I want to share about my experience from yesterday. During the morning staff meeting, one of the teachers explained that a student’s mother was very sick. Only an hour later, Ben, Carlos, and myself were standing in her house asking about her condition. Doing my best to understand what was being spoken about, I took in the living conditions of this family. Only three days ago, I was in Seattle taking my final exams for my sophomore year at college and moving my things into my new apartment. Now, I found myself standing in a cinder block rectangle with a tin roof with no moving air, stifling hot, and praying for the life and spiritual standing of this young mother with far too many health problems to list. I was slapped in the face for having thought that my apartment was too small. Never again.

Here is where Love Guatemala comes in. In only two days, I have seen the heart of this organization. It is Jesus. It is relationship. It is giving hope. I understood when entering the house that a longstanding relationship had already been built between Ben, Carlos, and this family. Thelma, the mother fighting for her life was comforted to hear that we were going to get medicine for her. I believe she was more comforted in seeing the faces of friends who cared about her situation and children. Carlos and I returned later that evening with her prescription costing only a few dollars and food for the family. We carried rice, beans, soup mix, and two flats of eggs. I couldn’t tell you what Thelma or her children had last eaten.

Naiveté is bliss we say in the states. Not any more.

My eyes have been opened to the vast needs of those around me. I may be the “extranjero” or foreigner in this situation, but these are our brothers and sisters in Christ. Mis hermanos y hermanas en Cristo. With this responsibility, I am excited to partner with the work that God is doing here in Magdalena Milpas Altas. I am excited to partner with this ministry and the work of Love Guatemala. If you support Love Guatemala, know that your financial gifts are being used well and stewarded for the most benefit to those in this community. Every action taken by the staff of Love Guatemala is for the glory of God.

In that house, love was spoken. Hope was spoken. The name of Jesus was spoken. I wanted to cry when I got back to where I am staying, but I couldn’t, because that would not be a good use of my time. Yes, it was hard to see some of the situations surrounding this community, but some people say that the spiritual poverty of America is far worse than the physical poverty of less developed countries. I am starting to understand that when I see the smiles of faces and hear the laughter coming from the people of this community. God is here and where He is there is freedom.

-Caleb the Intern