Give Me Your Love

Give me Your eyes for just one second
Give me Your eyes so I can see
Everything that I keep missing
Give me Your love for humanity
Give me Your arms for the broken-hearted
The ones that are far beyond my reach
Give me Your heart for the ones forgotten

Give me Your eyes so I can see

This past week, my church has gone on a mission trip to Reading, PA. Reading is the poorest city per capita in the US. It is also in the top 30 for highest crime rates. While in Reading, we had the opportunity to beautify a vacant lot in a neighborhood. We held a bible camp for the neighborhood kids, mostly African-American and Hispanic. In the afternoons, we worked on cleaning Christ Presbyterian Church and completing projects like putting up rubber baseboard, chipping plaster, painting, and filling in holes with cement.

This dirty, dingy neighborhood has about 15 or 20 kids. They are the sweetest kids you will ever meet. But you wonder what will happen when they grow up.

Elias is 16 years old. He is going into tenth grade. When you talk to him, you can understand a little bit of what he says but he has trouble stringing words together into coherent sentences. I don’t know his situation or about his learning and developmental issue. I don’t know how he came to  have this issue. But what will happen when he graduates high school and has nowhere to go? Will his family care for him? I don’t know.

Angel is a very gentlemanly boy but he gets mad so easily. It can be scary to think of what he could be like in a few years. I pray that God will work here.He wants my dad to build him “a seat” from scraps of wood. He’s 11 years old. His dad told us that there is a grate in their basement. Around the grate, water is seeping up from the sewers. There is sewage in their basement. They’ve called the city but the city won’t fix it. They don’t have the money to fix it themselves. Angel’s dad asked if we can help. Can we?

Yaira is three. She taught me more spanish today than I have learned in my life. She can’t speak english. She is one of the cutest little girls I have seen but she has a temper. She was yelling in spanish, “I won’t stand this! I have my rights!” Where did she hear that? She’s three. Where will she be when she’s 13? 14? 17? Will she ever escape this life of danger and dirt?

Robert is 6. He told my mom that at his school in “the grassy area where the dogs poop” there was a pitbull that bit a boy’s face. “And the cops came and they shot it but they had to shoot it again because it wouldn’t let go.” Think about what this kid saw. A  dog chewed a person’s face. The cops shot it. Twice. Was this last night while he was playing with his friends? Robert said that his family has an “American pit” too. So does Diana’s family. My mom was talking to them, thinking “Wow, a lot of you have pitbulls.” Well duh! They need them to protect themselves.

The Gordon Street neighborhood wasn’t dangerous or threatening; I didn’t expect gunshots. But I wouldn’t go there at night. I wouldn’t want my kids to live there. But for these families, this is all they have. It’s all they know.

the lot with the newly constructed pergola in the background

Luis, John Carlos, and me

Angel, Henry, and me. I had to bribe Angel to take this picture by telling him he could take a picture with my camera. He eagerly agreed :)

mi muchacha Yaira and me

My mom and John Carlos

Gordon Street and the kids playing

I’m going to miss this.

Lord, please take my life and let it be an offering of sacrificial love to others. Please give me faith and courage. Thank you for this opportunity. Please let me be able to return. Please help me to heed your command to “Go, therefore.” Please work in this place.

Take my life and let it be
consecrated, Lord, to Thee.
Take my moments and my days,
let them flow in ceaseless praise.
Take my hands and let them move
at the impulse of Thy love.
Take my feet and let them be
swift and beautiful for Thee.

Take my voice and let me sing
always, only for my King.
Take my lips and let them be
filled with messages from Thee.
Take my silver and my gold
not a mite would I withhold.
Take my intellect and use
every power as You choose.

Take my will and make it Thine
it shall be no longer mine.
Take my heart it is Thine own
it shall be Thy royal throne.
Take my love, my Lord I pour
at Your feet its treasure store
Take myself and I will be
ever, only, all for Thee.

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