Coming to America

I know that it’s Memorial Day and I should probably post a blog along that theme.  But since I just recently posted a blog on my Grandfather (who was also a WWII veteran), I’ve decided to post on a different topic…one that we’ve talked about before, but not for a while: Compassion International.  You’ve heard me talk about Compassion International’s Leadership Development Program students before.  They are an amazing group of students.  This past week, I got to spend time with five of them.

First up was two days and two nights last weekend of sightseeing in Nashville with Stella from Kenya.  I met Stella on my first trip to Kenya 3 years ago and have gotten to see her several times since….including getting to go with her to Seattle to meet her sponsor the first time she was in the states.  We both loved the Delta Riverboat cruise at Opryland and Stella proclaimed Broadway to be “very American” due to all the hats and cowboy boots.  But beyond all the fun times, I loved getting to be around Stella’s encouraging spirit.  Her absolute faith in the Lord is inspiring and her positive attitude is infectious.

IMG_5611

Enjoying our time at the Opryland Hotel.

IMG_5582

Stella wanted a photo with a sign that said “Nashville: Music City USA.” The Joe’s Crab Shack mural was sadly the only one we could find.

IMG_5577

My sweet friend Stella. Posing for a quick portrait outside the Frist Center for the Visual Arts. I figured after dragging her to Broadway and Opryland, she needed a break from “touristy” spots so we checked out the South American pottery and felt cultured.

This past Tuesday morning, I dropped Stella off in Huntsville with her host family and continued on to Talledega, Alabama for Student Life Camp training week.  When I was India this past March, I absolutely fell in love with the LDP students we met.  One of the students, Vicky, is still in India finishing up his University exams, but the other four students are here and getting adjusted to life in America.  We had lots of good conversation about the oddities of American culture (why DO we take ice in every drink, even if it’s cold outside…or inside?) and what they would encounter this summer.  Hearing them practice telling their stories and the impact Compassion International has had on them and their families was amazing.  It’s incredible that these students who grew up in such extreme poverty (one boy mentioned his father’s wages were around 85 cents per day in US currency), in some cases in single-parent households or the children of addicts, are now able to stand up and tell their stories…..stories that end in changed hearts and lives and great success.  Today the students shared these stories with their teams on behalf of the many many children in the world that are still living in poverty, without hope or dreams.

IMG_7607

Neha (left) and Sudeshna (right) pose with me after having just given me my first lesson in how to wear a Sari.

img_7293

Finally getting to wear the Sari I purchased on my trip to Kolkata in March. The girls told me I was “looking very Indian,” but apparently three-quarter length sleeves on the blouse for is a little “frumpy” for girls my age. I’ll be taking the blouse-fabric to an Indian tailor this week to get something made that is a little more “fresh.” Don’t want to be out of style on the many occasions I will undoubtably have to rock my Sari!

IMG_0396

Uttam is all ready for Staff Recreation in his yellow team gear. I cheered from the sidelines.

So, this Memorial Day as we remember the many who fought for the freedoms we enjoy as Americans, let us not forget the many others living poverty around the world who don’t have those same opportunities and freedoms.  I’m thankful for these students and the amazing stories that they share on behalf of the voiceless children still oppressed by hopelessness.

If you would like to sponsor a child through Compassion International, either click on this link here, or on the banner that appears on the sidebar of our blog.  Or, if you would like to become part of the story of one of Compassion’s amazing Leadership Development Students, you can click here to become an LDP sponsor.

Advertisements

Tags: , , , , ,

About bethanybordeaux

I fiddle around a bit.

2 responses to “Coming to America”

  1. Teresa Dawn says :

    Love the work Compassion does 🙂

    • bethanybordeaux says :

      Yes! It is amazing to see the lives that are changed through Compassion. Proud to link arms with them in a small way. Blessings on you!

%d bloggers like this: