Monday, June 30, 2014

The Presence of Dignity

The presence of dignity doesn't mean that poverty is absent.
I was pondering this sentence in light of my recent trip to visit two of my Honduran sponsored children, and have many visual images imprinted on my memory related to this from the many people I met and the homes I visited, such as this one... 

 or this one...
or this...
Having visited in several of the homes, I prefer to turn this around and say, "The presence of poverty doesn't mean that dignity is absent," because the first thing I was so acutely aware of was the presence of poverty.

As I observed, albeit with a hurting heart for the families living in such impoverished conditions, I began to see also the dignity that many of them held...
homes and belongings were made as presentable as they could...
and I saw the sense of pride and joy as they welcomed us in...
The moment I was most overwhelmed with their dignity in the face of such poverty however, was when we were served a meal in the poorest of the homes that I visited.  Here was a family with so little in possessions in every way, with so little food, without even a source of water in their home or close by, who had spent so much of their time and meager resources to provide a meal for us...

a stack of handmade tortillas, a tasty chicken vegetable soup, a plate heaping with rice, and one of their chickens they had roasted along with with a few small eggs.

Eating that meal was painfully difficult knowing that this family struggles so hard for their food, and are often hungry... they have so little.  Yet the greatest gift we could give was to accept their generous gift, and to do so graciously, enjoying what has been so lovingly prepared... allow the ones who have been so often on the end of needing to receive from others, the privilege of being the generous givers. 

We did pray privately among ourselves before eating that we wouldn't get sick, and asked the Lord to bless the family for their generous hearts.
When faced with such dignity and generosity in the face of such extreme poverty, I just am overwhelmed.  I felt like they had prepared for us just like they would have done so for Jesus... sacrificially, and with great love.



  1. Very touching and wonderful post, Deborah!

    1. Thank you, Judy. We were both so blessed to receive such love from Mario's family.

  2. Amen!! I love this post and the photos.

  3. Wonderful post! That first picture,those twins-stunning! :)

    1. Thanks, Marilyn, and the girls definitely were so beautiful!