I can’t explain it. There’s nothing like seeing the joy of a child when they are told that their fingerprints are unlike any other fingerprint in the world and that “God made them special.” Have you ever looked at your fingers? Have you ever noticed the intricate details of your prints and realized that this identifies you as YOU? Now imagine a world where you are rarely, if ever, told you that you are different, unique, special, made for a purpose, and have the choice to help others using all your uniqueness?
Maybe growing up, you too never had strong leaders modeling for you how to live your life this way, never believing you are truly special. We witness this same excitement every time we teach a new ‘Virtue of the Month’ in schools and churches throughout East Africa. Our prayer is that through a “Holistic Discipleship” experience, they will be empowered to live how God really made them. Holistic means that we utilize various methods of teaching to allow every child the chance to know the truth about what God says and thinks about them. How do we do this? We use the arts, sports, science, history, God’s scripture, games, theatre and relational activities in every lesson that is taught by those indigenous youth leaders. We recognize the uniqueness of every student because we know that God made us special too!
And when you dip the finger of a child into a dab of paint and place it onto a sheet of paper as one of many activities, many are seeing their true finger prints for the first time ever. And then there’s the excitement of comparing it to their friend in the classroom as we ask them, “Do they look the same?” They have to look close to see there is not a single detail that matches their neighbor. They then realize, “God really DID make me special!” I love that God allows all of us who work with Rejoice Project to see this moment. It is truly beautiful and I often wonder how many of these students will remember this moment for the rest of their lives. I know I will. This is that first step, the AWAKENING of a child’s heart to the beauty of God’s unique love for them. No matter how difficult their lives become, or the tragedies they experience; what if they knew that they could persevere and make a difference because of their uniqueness? We know the impact. We’ve seen it. We pray for these special children and ask that you too pray for their hearts as they realize who they are in Christ.