How God Used My Talents To Help At An Orphanage In Mexico
Have you ever watched God use your talents to create something you never thought possible? I had that opportunity at an orphanage in Mexico. Read about it below...
Imagine you are a young child. You no longer have parents. You are an orphan. Who would take care of you? If you are an orphan in America, maybe you have extended family who will take you in. Perhaps you would be in the foster program.
Now, imagine you are an orphan living in Mexico. There is no foster system. No loving families to take you in.
There are only orphanages in Mexico. Orphanages that are funded solely through donations.
Every year, for the last few years, our family has gone to Mexico. Not for a vacation, but to spend a week volunteering at an orphanage. It is the highlight of our year!
We love going to visit the kids. They are so stinking cute! We love playing with them and getting to know them each individually. We also enjoy helping fix or build the things they need.
Our family has helped on work projects like building a well house, painting, tiling, fixing sewer lines, working on the kitchen, mudding, and other odd jobs. The group we go with, A Child’s Hope Foundation, leads us in each job.
Last year, I worked with a group of 10 women, young women, and girls. We were asked to paint a large mural that would cover two walls in the psychologist office, where the kids would get counseling.
Many of the kids at this orphanage actually have families. They were taken from their parents because of things like physical abuse or drug addiction. There is no foster system, so the kids stay at the orphanage.
Some parents are working to get their children back. The psychologist uses her office to counsel the parents together, with their children. The room we were painting needed to be a place of peace, love and hope.
We were asked to paint something peaceful on the walls.
You know, it's interesting how the Lord guides and inspires us.
Sometimes God stretches our talents in ways we never thought possible.
Two years before I was asked to do the mural, I was looking on YouTube for somet
hing to paint on canvas. I found a peaceful Japanese tree in bloom to paint. It is my favorite painting that hangs in my home. As I look back, I feel strongly that God led me to paint the one for my home, so that he could prepare me to lead others in painting it at the orphanage. To me, it is a testament of how the Lord is always directing our path.
I have never painted on anything larger than a 20 inch canvas...this was a huge project for me! I felt inspiration leading me with each step. I was able to lead the group of women and girls (some of them had never painted) and we created a beautiful painting for the kids! I'm so excited with the way it turned out!
Together, we transformed a room with bare white walls into a place of serenity and peace.
First, we painted the two walls a beautiful turquoise color. After letting it dry, we painted the circle flowers. This was easy for everyone to do; even the younger girls. It turned out so pretty!
Next, we needed to paint the trees. I’ll be honest, I was so nervous about painting such a dark color on the walls and covering up the pretty flowers we had just worked so hard on. The whole time we were painting flowers, I was wondering how to paint everything else. As we were almost done with the flowers, I felt God inspire me on how to teach everyone to paint the trees. I had the older girls paint the outside lines of the branches. Then, the younger girls filled in the lines with black paint. It was perfect! They all did a great job!
When that was dry, we added some white on the trees to give them depth and make it look like old, worn out wood. We used cotton balls to paint white blossoms on the ends of the branches.
After everything was dry, we painted three Japanese lanterns hanging from the trees. Each one is a different color.
My daughter added Chinese characters to the mural. We decided to use the words peace, family, hope, love, and home. Each one of the sweet children at the orphanage needs more peace, hope and love. We left a note that translated the words from Chinese into English and then into Spanish.
I loved seeing the painted room come together! Looking at the photos blows me away that I could pull off something like this. I had no idea I could do something this big and lead others in creating it. I'm excited to go back again and paint more murals!
It's funny...my American family traveled to an orphanage in Mexico to paint walls with Japanese trees and lanterns, and Chinese characters. I think that is a pretty international experience!
I’m so glad that God used me and my talents (that I didn’t realize I had) to lead others to create a beautiful gift for the kids in Mexico. I hope that it gives peace to the kids and their families.
*If you would like to volunteer with the same opportunity my family does, we go through A Child’s Hope Foundation. It is the perfect volunteer opportunity for families! You do not need to have any special skills to volunteer with this group. They will teach you how to do the projects they need worked on. And, as a bonus, they take all ages! One year, a mama brought her 6 month old baby. Another year, a grandma came. Here is the link https://www.achildshopefoundation.org/
*Here is the link to the video I used for my inspiration. https://youtu.be/LW4vB-60mZM
If you end up painting this, or go serve at an orphanage through A Child’s Hope Foundation, I’d love for you to share a photo and your experience with me in my facebook group - the Mamas Living Happy Tribe!