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Grace Embodied

January 14, 2016

Rex is quickly becoming one of my favorite people. He and I are the same age, but the energy he gives night and day with these children is astounding. During a short break from scavenger hunts and Bible stories, Rex shares a bit of his own story. 

He’s the ninth out of twelve children in the family, and he was born into extreme poverty just like all the kids that surrounded us now. As a child he spent his time collecting garbage to sell to help support his family. When he was three years old KKFI offered to help out the family, but his parents initially refused. Once his mother continued to struggle with feeding all twelve kids, they accepted the offer and Rex’s world began to change. 

Rex benefitted from all that KKFI had to offer including the slippers (flip-flops) from “Soles for Souls”, transportation to and from school, an education geared toward his stage of development, and meals to help him gain strength and stay focused in class. 

Now whenever he meets new people he asks, “Are you a Methodist?” because he is so grateful for all the UMC has done through KKFI by giving him a shot at a future. 

For any child coming into the program there is only one condition: stop selling stuff on the street. This rule is meant to protect them from the temptation and dangers of falling into trafficking, a world from which they may never return. If they are caught continuing to sell, their parents will be informed, but no punishable action takes place. There is a slight threat to discontinue their education and feeding program, but Rex would never actually follow through because he believes in giving these kids every chance they can get. He is the ultimate example of grace embodied in human form and his heart for these kids grows bigger every day. 

I teased Rex one day when he mentioned needing some caffeine. “Aha!” I said. “So that’s where all your energy comes from.” He quickly corrected me. “No, the energy with the children is all natural because I see myself in them. I need to stay excited and keep them motivated so they’ll want to give back too.”

  

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