By: Sandra DeJean
Several months ago one Friday morning Ms. Carmen Morris of Sanctuary of Moses in Benin, West Africa asked me to come lead a children's program in one of the cities there. I accepted. But after months of preparation, some painful vaccinations, a move to another state, and 20 hours of travel time to get here I started to lose focus of what brought me here in the first place.
Those close to me these last few weeks have lovingly called me the "VBS queen." I must have come to Benin 'cause I'm one of those adults that don't want to grow up and just have fun all the time, right? While I do wish EVERY week was VBS (unless I had to plan it, of course) and firmly believe it is one of the best methods of outreach for children (and adults), that's not the reason. Or even the fact that the ministry of the Sanctuary of Moses is an awesome work that will change the lives of so many children and families here in Benin is not my reason for being here.
Yesterday, we had some down time and went to a local marketplace. There, I found my answer. While other team members were bargaining for lower prices, I sat at the vendor next door and there she was. Little 11 month old Erica put everything back into perspective.
The moment I saw her I loved her! I was reminded that Jesus looks at us all no matter how old we are or where we are in our relationship with Him and loves us (I think of the rich young ruler in Mark 10:20-22). He loves Erica and put that love in my heart. He loves the children of Benin and has put that love in my heart. He did that the moment Carmen asked me to join her on this trip.
Actually, I realize now that on that Friday morning while on the phone Carmen, God asked me to join Him in Benin.
And that's why I'm here.