We gathered Wednesday morning with the families leaving for home, and shared both the joy and the tears which accompany the prayers offered as we sent them on their way back to their families.
The bonds formed with these women and children are a strong witness of the power of God's love as we live life together through the intense events which give the children new hearts.
Once on our way through the mountains around Jerusalem down to the Dead Sea, we made a brief stop for one last camel picture.
Donya didn't seem to be very impressed, and thankfully wasn't fearful of the big animal under her. She fell asleep as we rode through the Jordan Valley, and after being awakened while our van and luggage was searched on our way to the border, sat happily in her car seat the rest of the journey.
Because we had the crossing terminal almost to ourselves, our passport processing went quickly, and we found the bus waiting for us once we arrived at the bus stop. With more tears and hugs we bade each other farewell from the steps of the bus, and they said goodbye to Israel and hello to Jordan. They were happy to know that Dirk would be at the Jordan terminal to greet them, and host them until they flew home a few days later.
Keep praying for little Donya as her body grows into the strength she has now with her new heart. Those of us at the house have already noticed that she'd become stronger and her personality is blooming before our eyes. One thing I noticed is that she was laughing out loud a lot rather than just grinning at us. What a joy it is to experience such changes - it is only the love of God which could arrange for a tiny Iraqi girl to have life-saving heart surgery in the land of her supposed enemies, and for the Jewish doctors here offer the surgery because of their sincere desire to love their neighbors as they love themselves. All praise to God!
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