A Divine Appointment
Blog post written by Stephen Keenan
Graduate, Brethren Christian High School
4th time serving in El Salvador
This morning we visited an all boys center. As soon as we got there we took a tour of the whole property. It's one of the biggest centers in El Salvador and can house up to 500 boys. However, there were only about 30 boys in the center at this time. We were told that the center may be housing hundreds of children in the future who are currently being detained at the US border. After the tour we gathered all of the boys to start our basketball clinic. The boys seemed to have a pretty good time although they were a little shy at first. Most of them started off playing basketball, but being from El Salvador they gravitated toward the soccer field.
As I was playing basketball I was called over to what I discovered was a divine appointment. One of the girls who participated in the quinceanera has recently returned to her family. It turned out that she attends the school right next to the soccer field and one of the missionaries recognized her on her break. I had escorted her on the night of the quinceanera (see below) and she was excited to see me. We learned that she is having a hard time and were relieved that one of the missionary families will be able to follow up and spend time with her later this week. She was overjoyed to see all of the pictures and videos from the quinceanera and still seemed to be glowing with excitement from the event. She told us that she still had her dress and was "enchanted" by the entire experience. We were amazed that God brought us together for such a divine appointment! We never expected to run into a girl from the quinceanera at a boys' orphanage!
After the sports clinics we gathered the boys together for some testimonies. Jenni asked me to share my testimony about growing up without a dad. I encouraged the boys to study, work hard, trust in God and not be victimized by their pasts or current situations. I'm not sure if what I shared sunk in with any of the boys or meant anything. But if it affected even one person, it was well worth it. Michael, a psychologist on our team, also spoke about dealing with trauma. He challenged the boys to invite Jesus into their hearts as they work through their pasts and trust God for their future.
Our hearts were full as we hopped into Kurt's truck and headed to lunch. We couldn't stop talking about the divine appointment that we had just experienced and I was humbled by the opportunity that God gave me to speak truth and hope to the boys.