There is something about the joy that radiates from the eyes of a child. As an Elementary Education major in college, I have been in a lot of classrooms. From inner city schools who's student population battles the complexities of homelessness, gang violence, and drugs to Christian private schools with students that typically have involved and loving parents that would do anything to make sure their child succeeds. I've learned that kids are kids no matter who their parents are and how they are raised. They simply want to feel loved and accepted by those around them. The children of Kumasi, Ghana are no exception.
I have traveled to Ghana for 2 weeks at a time for the last three summers. Each time I return home, the one thing that always stands out to me most is contagious JOY that comes from the kids we work with at Cherubs Children's Home. Looking at the children's home we visit through the eyes of a US Citizen, it seems like the children have so little.
Journal Entry: July 29, 2016 10:53 pm
"The Children here have so little--yet so much joy. It has been hard for me to wrap my mind around how happy and loving these children can be when they don't even have what I assume to be basic necessities. When I was thinking about this at Cherubs today I just felt the Holy Spirit gently remind me, "abundant joy comes from the Lord". God is SO COOL!!! Tonight Pastor Mark shared Romans 15:13 that says, "May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit." WOW. This was such perfect timing and I know it's not just a coincidence. God is teaching me so much about trusting in Him fully so that I can overflow with the abundant joy that flows from him."
Through my experiences in Ghana and the classrooms of America, I have learned so much about the beautiful innocence and the simplicity of life that children hold onto. We are all created in the image of God and that is so clear when you look into the joy filled eyes of a child. I've learned that joy is choice. Each day I want to wake up and choose to have that child like joy no matter the circumstances. If you have never experienced this kind of joy it only takes a day of your time to get involved somewhere that works with children. It doesn't have to be Cherubs Children's Home in Ghana (highly recommended though (: ) it can be anywhere- the nursery/children's ministry at your church or your local boys and girls club. Kids are kids no matter where you are. They're silly, full of giggles, and lots of love. When they are begging you to pick them up "one more time" for the hundredth time- look in to those joy filled eyes and I promise you, they will teach you so much about God's character and the JOY that overflows.