Kindness in a strange land

We said goodbye to our sweet adorable Shan and her amazing mother this afternoon. After only a little over a month in Israel, Shan has had her surgery, recovered well, and now can return to her home in Kurdistan. Her mother is very glad to be going home to her husband, and I’m sure that Shan will also be pleased to see her father. Of course, our joyful little girl is hardly ever displeased about anything.

Over the past weeks we’ve had Shan and her mother in our Jerusalem guest house, I’ve been surprised again and again by what a happy baby Shan is. She hardly ever cries, and will smile and giggle at the slightest provocation. She’s six months old now, a happy pink baby. At her goodbye party last night, Shan’s mom shared that she had never imagined her baby could be so pink. When Shan first came, her lips and eyelids and fingernails were a deep purple – but now they are a beautiful pink!

It has been an incredible blessing to meet Shan and her mother. Shan’s mother is an amazing woman. When one of the other Kurdish mothers lost her child in the hospital, Shan’s mom left Shan with another mother and came right away to support and encourage the mother in the hospital during this horribly difficult time. She was the perfect person to comfort the other mother in her loss – she sacrificed many hours of sleep and rest to support the other mother while she was waiting to return home.

Shan’s mother always said during those weeks in the hospital, “As long as Shan is okay, I’m okay.” She is such a wonderful mother to Shan.

At Shan’s farewell party, her mother also shared that she had come to Israel for her daughter’s surgery never expecting to find kindness in the people here. However, she was so happy and surprised to find care and support from both Shevet volunteers and doctors. She said that we were like family to her. We will miss both of them greatly – but we rejoice that they can return home in joy.

Please pray that Shan will continue to grow in grace and health, and that the love these two have felt here at Shevet will follow them home and continue to bless them and draw them nearer to our Lord.