My name is Autumn Buzzell and I live and work in Ghana, West Africa with City of Refuge Ministries. Here, I run our school, Faith Roots International Academy, and get to be a part in rescuing and the healing of children who have been trafficked into the fishing trade, orphaned, abandoned, and those who just need a little extra loving. What an amazing gift this life is!

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Friday, June 20, 2014

2 years, 4 years

June 20th is a big day around here.

For many of our children, their rescue date becomes the date we celebrate every year to represent their birthdate. So many of our kids don't know their birthdate, so the day when their new life began, becomes a day of celebration for us here. 

4 years ago, just about a month before I moved to Ghana, these two were rescued:


My first experience with these two came with sign language while they learned both Twi and English, behavior problems, and lots and lots and lots of tears. 

DK was gentle and sensitive and purely boy and his first English words had something to do with John Cena.

Abigail was fiery and filled with anger, yet gentle and compassionate towards our littles and always up for a little extra loving.

And as I think back, so much has changed, yet it is still THEM. DK is funny and gentle, though his "boy" comes out in his hunting and wrestling and the joy of the game. Abigail is still as fiery as ever, yet we see her kindness and her outgoing nature to welcome just about anyone.

4 years. I look at their pictures and see children, and yet today, they look like teenagers, faces gradually changing into the fullness of adulthood. Abigail turned 15 today and DK 14. How is that possible? 

And two years ago, these ones came home to CORM on June 20th, giving us 4 more reasons to celebrate:
Florence, Hannah, Alex, and John

Florence had a permanent frown on her face, tears readily filling her eyes. It took her over a month to begin to trust, to settle in, to smile and laugh and play. And now, her smile, big and wide and hungry for love and learning.

And Hannah, so similar to Abigail, fiery and impatient. And while that hasn't changed much, we see glimpses of the future, the tenderness of all that she is capable of.

Alex settled in easily,  not one to stir up trouble, and quickly caught on in school, striving towards being first in his class both academically and by example.

And John, filled with anger and quick to fight, he came in wanting to hurt anyone that walked in front of him. He has been one we have spent so much time praying over, that God would soften, and heal, and move. And we are seeing it...the more love, the more change.

I think back and remember and know how much God has moved and changed and grown these treasures that He has given to us. Oh, how much have been moved and changed and grown by these treasures.

So, happy birthday sweet ones. We are so glad God called you home with us, and we are praying that the year ahead will lead to blessing after blessing as you continue to live into the love of your great Father.

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