mirad a vuestros pequeñitos

After much musing and meditating, I've decided to stop thinking about myself all the time. I've been craving some sort of direction and, while we're being dramatic, a so-called "reason-for-living," and I've decided to lose myself to...find myself? Sure. 

My sister worked at an orphanage in Quito, Ecuador for three months two years ago. And as we all know that I think she's probably one of the greatest humans on the planet, so I try to be a grade A carbon copy of her. Some things work (like we have the same last name), others don't (like everything else). But I do know that she came back a changed and better person because of that experience, and from that point on, I have always been intrigued by the program and this idea of submerged service.
I've been thinking about this for a while, wondering when the time would be right, and really wondering if this could be a worthwhile thing for me, so as any cutie-patutie Mormon would, you turn to The Guy Upstairs. The cool thing about God is that he likes you to think for yourself. The not-so-cool thing about God is that he likes you to think for yourself. I prayed forever about this, and I got absolutely nothing. And it freaked me out. How in the world is someone supposed to make a fairly large decision like this without any hint of confirmation as to what I was doing was right? I don't know about you, but sometimes faith is hard. But that's where your brain, your intuition, your GUTS comes in.
So I filled out the paperwork. I got my references, got my tentative plans together and said to hell with it. If I felt like it was right, then I'm doing it. I don't need no confirmation! I have GUTS, I tell you--GUTS!!! And nothing goes better with a heaping of GUTS than a big 'ol confirmation that presented itself as I slipped my application into its precious manila envelope. And again when I dropped it in the mailbox. And again when Ali from headquarters called me and said I was accepted and she'd actually like me to leave two weeks earlier. Thanks Big Guy, I knew you wouldn't let me down.

So here goes. I'm heading down to Cuenca, Ecuador on December 22, to dedicate my being to some kids who've got practically nothing. I'm going through Orphanage Support Services Organization of which several Davis County girls I know of have gone through including my sister and another one of my pals from high school. It is a truly incredible organization that have been superb to work with thus far. And to insert this in now, I know that sometimes prayers are answered through others, and if you've had any sort of desire to do something like this, please do this. We can build schools, we can build wells, but coming from a person who has done several forms of humanitarian work, there is nothing so powerful than directly seeing a soul in need of some sort of serenity. This may be preemptive on my part, but there's a reason I was asked to come two weeks early. The organization is in dire need. They have several options set up for long-term volunteers (two to twenty-four weeks) as well as a great short-term volunteer program (two to fourteen days) that's geared for families as well as individuals. (More info on both HERE.) If you have any questions at all regarding the organization, you can contact them directly at info@orphanagesupport.org.

Anywho (I really need to stop saying that), I know most of the people who will read this post are famished college kids who are living off canned foodstuffs, but if you're interested and/or willing, I am accepting sponsors/donations to aide in the expenses it will take for me to work there. If you'd like to make a donation on my behalf, please contact me at anna.james@comcast.net. And just to put it out there for anyone who may be interested, donations may also be made directly to OSSO (Orphanage Support Services Organization (OSSO) P.O. Box 345 Rexburg, ID 83440) to help with needs in the actual orphanages, such as purchasing milk, food, clothes, paying for tutors, helping pay for school registration fees and school supplies and uniforms, paying for physical therapists and other necessary professionals, etc.

Blah blah blah...thank you so much for taking the time to read this and be relatively concerned about me and my life decisions. I have am surrounded by such supportive people, it amazes me on a daily basis. THANK YOU.


katrina said...

ANNA! im so happy you are doing this! good on ya! im excited to hear all about it. oh bless your heart anna james. i love you.

katrina said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Shelby said...

I love you a. james.

city girl said...

What a great thing to do!

Anonymous said...

You must be back by now so....how was it? Did it change your life?