Thursday, September 12, 2013

Sanmenxia SWI, a very special birthday!!

I have been working on a blog post all week but the time, Internet connections and thoughts have not meshed so I could write and post. We just  left Senmenxia  City where Levi's orphanage is located. We took a " bullet train" which is an incredible mass transit train which travels at up to 300 kph!!! The 4 hour car drive is reduced to1 hour and some minutes, the staff at the orphanage truly care for the children, the volunteers were some amazing people who I didn't know had been part of a large group praying a family for Meng Meng And then praying us through our 
"Times of Road Boulders." I have some great photos of children and staff as well as a very old blind man who Meng Meng/ now named Levi called Grampa. What a dear old man he was!! And the children? Precious, mostly special needs of some kind or another and except for one boy who sadly is already too old to be adopted and who cried that his friend was leaving , the other children were so happy for him! When we got to the front door Levi ran in shouting ( I presume) " Hey I am back and I have my mom with me!" because  he then ran back out, grabbed my hand and dragged me inside to meet his friends and the staff. We took photos and I toured the facility. Oh readers!!!! The baby room didn't just break my heart, it crushed it!! There were at least  20 babies from newborn to 2 years, but most in the preemie to 6 month size, lined up in infant seats along a wall or laid out on blankets on the floor.....I don't think there was one who was totally healthy. The staff were loving and kind, but the huge responsibility in that room alone was staggering! One of the sweetest faced people I've ever seen was a young woman, with no legs,in a wheel chair, holding and loving on those babies. Words fail me!!!!   Because it IS Levi's birthday today, the staff bought a cake to celebrate with . It was quite the lovely creation with creamy topping and decorated with fruit . We sang "Happy Birthday" to Levi and another boy whose birthday is also today. A Chinese custom is that the birthday celebrant dip ones a finger into the  icing and smear a bit on the nose or forehead and cheeks of someone else. It was great fun ! We had a meeting with the Director and staff, took more photos,said the good byes and it was time to leave. Levi did well with that. I got the sense that since he found out a out us the staff has been preparing him for his " goodbye day". The staff took us out to lunch at a fabulous restaurant! I know I experienced some of the best food I have ever eaten !!! From there it was time to head back to the train station. Oh I didn't mention that we applied for Levi's passport this morning as well.  There was so much joy for Levi that he was leaving with his mom. He told everyone several times, " This is the happiest day of my life!"  I am going to have to log backwards from today to tell the story .
Levi's "Grampa", a very kind and wise man!

he said , "This is my bed no more!

one of the volunteers at the orphanage, and I discovered also a prayer partner in Levi's redemption story!

Birthday cake, China style!

while family at home celebrated Riley's 2nd birthday and Charlie's 4th birthday with family all around, we celebrated Levi's FIRST birthday with family as he turned 14!

Singing HAPPY BIRTHDAY in Mandarin and in English!!

at the orphanage


Leslie said...

What a beautiful day for you. We were unable to tour the orphanage due to time constraints but did go to the school. It broke my heart, too. So thankful for you!

connie said...

Oh, the joy in Levi's face!!! Just can't stop praising GOD!!!