If I were to write about this trip to Rio, it would be a whole book. Instead, I am going to share a small piece of something new I discovered.
Whenever I hear the word ‘Love”, I think of relationships that you have with God, friends, family, teammates, and maybe a significant other. As humans, we need someone to show us love. On this trip to Rio, I discovered another type of Love.
There was about 22 of us including coaches and players. Each school maybe had 40-60 kids and we had 10 interpreters. So there were a lot of us and few interpreters. I was astonished how we could not speak any Portuguese but when it was our last day some of the students were crying, they were giving us endless hugs, and even giving some of us gifts.
I already knew a simple smile could brighten someones day, but to these kids, when we gave them a smile, hug or playing with them, that was another type of love without even speaking to them or having an intimate 1-on-1 conversation. Sometimes we were probably looking like complete idiots trying to act out what we were trying to say to them if the interpreters were busy helping someone else.
The kids found all of us on Facebook and have been messaging all of us. One kid in particular told me, “If I do not get to see you again, I know I will see you in Heaven one day.” When he sent that to me a big smile went on my face because I knew that he got it. He understood the message we were bringing.
The main purpose of this trip was to show them Jesus and Carlos got that message just like many others did. I’m thankful that my team and I got this opportunity. These kids will always be in my heart, and just like Carlos said, I know if I never get to see them again on Earth, I will see them again in Heaven.