Gratitude Coordinator. Sabrina has been a part of the Amigos story since it began, and she is truly grateful that she is able to tell the story of impact to our family with photographs, videos, stories, and art. Though trained as a nurse, she believes her work now is the same- she can bring healing and hope into people’s lives by allowing them to see their involvement in Amigos as God does – with deep joy that they are bringing about the Kingdom here and now for families in Nicaragua.

Balloons, Pigeons and Jesus

Watching children here play with balloons, I am reminded of my childhood. How 6-year me loved balloons. How many of us heard our mothers yelling, “Do not put that in your mouth!!! It could pop and you will choke!” We all gloriously ignored this, and would wrestle for them at birthday parties, and we all had our favorite color (blue!!!). It was the simplicity of them…. 

A little plastic, a little air and if you were lucky, a Helium shiny one that stayed in the house for 2 weeks….slowly floating to the ground like a fall leaf. (And in my house collecting dog fur and driving my mom CRAZY!) Balloons felt magical and sparked wonder. How many could we tie around our waists to fly? How many toys could the helium balloon float up? We could hum through them and let the air out as we blew them up with ear piercing squeals.
All environmental discussion aside, balloons represented celebration, life, color, and joy. Somewhere along the way, we become sophisticated, and our celebration decorations became paler, more subdued, and well, sigh…. grown up.

Nicaraguans celebrate grown up things as well, but the balloons are still always there. From birthdays to religious celebrations to graduations for children in your neighborhood, to water inaugurations, balloons still steal the spotlight. Color, air, and wind work their magic with the humble balloon to still create a sense of magic and of wonder

Wonder is an undercelebrated virtue. We can be loving to others, altruistic, hardworking, sober, and modest. But wondering? This requires us to be like children. We must be humble enough to not know all the answers and SEE magic in the ordinary.
When Jesus told us to be like children in Matthew 18:3, I like to think that He wanted us to never loose our wonder. The world is SO FULL of things that are just magical….

The dew in the morning, the iridescence of pigeons’ wings, the unique taste and tartness of a green apple, the heart shapes hole in the tree at a farm, the feel of water when you are thirsty, the goosebumps that startle us in music. I could go on and on, but wonder is often our best worship.

And the humble balloon reminds us that wonder in the kingdom of God is EVERYWHERE, if we can just be like children to see. Hint…go blow up a balloon and see how you FEEL. I bet a smile will be there.
Matthew 18:3-5 The Message  For an answer Jesus called over a child, whom he stood in the middle of the room, and said, “I’m telling you, once and for all, that unless you return to square one and start over like children, you’re not even going to get a look at the kingdom, let alone get in. Whoever becomes simple and elemental again, like this child, will rank high in God’s kingdom. What’s more, when you receive the childlike on my account, it’s the same as receiving me.

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