February 2017 Newsletter

Dear Friends,

We hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and New Year! We are so thankful for the way you stood with us in 2017, and already, we are into the second month of 2018. Time flies!

Christmas is such a busy time, especially when you have so many children who are just waiting for a gift. Now, I don't like to give just any gift; I like to think about what each child needs, not only for my own children, but for the children we reach in the community. Each child is different. Each child has special needs. This makes things much more time consuming going out and thinking about each one's specific needs. But putting time and thinking about what each child needs makes each one feel special! Isn't it amazing to think that God does that for us! And He already knows ALL of our needs!

A dear friend of ours spoke at church on Christmas. She read a verse that really touched my heart. After Jesus rose from the dead, He sent an angel to Mary Magdalene. The angel said to her, "Go tell His disciples and Peter, He is going ahead of you into Galilee." My favorite part of this verse is "...and PETER" (see Mark 16:7). Jesus went out of His way to let Peter know He loved him and He was still there for him, in spite of Peter's failings. He called Peter by name. God knew that Peter felt like a failure. God knew what Peter needed! God doesn't speak to me the same way He speaks to others; He speaks to me according to my needs. He doesn't give me the same gifts that He gives others; He gives me what I need.

Recently, God put a very special lady in my life. She truly has been sent by God; many days I feel she is an angel! When you have so many children, I think one of the hardest things is knowing each one of their needs. They are all different and knowing how to relate to each one in the best way can be challenging. I met up with this dear lady for coffee one day. She has more educational degrees than you can imagine! She was head of the children's hospital here. The list of things she has accomplished is long and quite impressive. I had been praying for a friend, someone who could walk with me and just let me pour out my heart, which is a very good thing to do when you work with people with so many needs.

As I sat down with her for a cup of coffee, telling her of all my children's needs, she said, "I can talk to you as a professional or I can talk to you as a mother." Tears rolled down her face as she begins to tell me all she has been through with each one of her children. She spoke to me right where I was, as a mother, just trying to do her best. Even though she has all the degrees you could ever need in child care, she was a mother just like me trying to do her best and trusting in the Lord every step of the way. "It certainly hasn't been easy," she said. "But God is faithful!"

Then she shared with me something that blew me away: she is also an expert on the topic of epilepsy. She has given many talks and taught in many hospitals. While teaching on this subject, her own daughter had a seizure, and much to their surprise, they found out their daughter had epilepsy. She asked me a question that has stuck with me ever since: "Do you think I gave better talks before or after I went through epilepsy with my own daughter?" Then she said, "Before, I spoke from what I learned in a book at school; now I speak from what I have experienced and from my heart. God is only able to bring about change at the level of the human heart."

Not only does God know our needs, He knows us! When we really know someone, we can better meet their needs. Every person is different! My husband, Enrique, recently said, "God finds us wherever we are and whatever condition we are in. He finds us; we don't find him." Isaiah 43:1 says, "Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine." God called Peter by name...He knew Peter. God knows me and He knows what I need. He knows you, too!

Many of you know the story of our daughter Mabel, who has had health issues over the last few years. My sweet new friend has given Mabel the opportunity to work at one of the schools she has started for Down Syndrome and Autistic children. It has been Mabel's dream to work with special needs children. She is very excited to start in March volunteering as a teacher's assistant. This has given her hope and encouragement as she faces her own struggles. I am beyond grateful to the Lord for all He is doing in each one of our children's lives. We appreciate you standing in prayer with us as each one faces different challenges and has different needs.

Because of your love, we were able to give very much-needed gifts to many children in the community and the children for whom we personally care. A six-year-old little girl named Ashley couldn't wait for her gift. Every time I saw her, she reminded me that her dream was to have new shoes and a doll baby. She lives in a house with a dirt floor and her many brothers and sister and cousins.

Thank you for all that you have done in past months and years to stand with us, whether in prayer or in special financial giving or volunteering. We are so grateful, and we ask you to please continue to remember us. Thus far, 2018 is filled with many new opportunities and challenges. Have a wonderful February!

Much love,

Enrique and Charlyn Mejia