Over the years, I have noticed something particular about the girls who live in the slum. They stay at home. Many times they have the responsibility of cleaning their house or taking care of younger brothers, sisters, nieces or nephews. They are not out and about in the community very often. I actually think this is a good thing. As girls, it is safer for them to be off the streets, and whenever I see any girls I know hanging out on the streets, I can tell, it is usually not a good thing.
Felipe sees boys from his past groups ALL the TIME. It is more normal for boys to hang out in the streets playing or flying kites, and often the boys from the slum are coming in and out of the Lighthouse, as there are always soccer games going on here.
So quite naturally and easily, Felipe has lots of opportunities to reconnect with boys he knows. Some of the "boys" who Felipe worked with in the past are now even grown, young men.
Yet, I do not see the girls from my past groups very often.
It is almost like they are in hiding.
So I realized, in order to see my girls, reconnect with them, have a good chat with them to see how they are really doing, I need to have some kind of gathering and invite them to come over.
Lately, I have really been missing the girls who I have worked with over the years of serving here in Brazil. I was praying about how I could touch base with these precious girls again, and then I had an idea - I could invite them to come and celebrate my birthday with me!
This morning, with Jessie bouncing on my hip, I went on a quick walk in the slum to a few houses of the girls I know. I was able to invite several girls, who participated in my past groups, to come over tomorrow (on my birthday) to hang out and eat cake together. I am super excited about reconnecting and sharing my special day with some amazing and precious girls!
Today someone asked me,
"Laura, what would you like for your birthday tomorrow?"
Honestly, THIS was the biggest thing in my heart. I want to spend time with these girls and be able to share a part of my birthday with them. I want to be able to give them each a big hug and remind them of the Father's great love for them.
Will you pray for our time together tomorrow?
I am really praying God will bring the girls who need to come and also give us a special time together.