Our time at the Children’s Uplift Program (CUP) was what you can call “short and sweet” but with two downfalls. It was way too short, and it was so powerfully sweet that it made our hearts ache, in a wonderful, tear-jerking way of course.
The program and environment of CUP was filled with love. As a group of three students with Inter-Varsity Christian Fellowship (IVCF) of Canada, Melissa, Daniel and I were invited and welcomed into CUP as ambassadors, friends and truly as family members into CUP. Bethany Jennings, the admin overseer and warm-hearted friend was the face and point of interaction and the person who shared with us the history, development and continual growth of CUP in Dhaka, Bangladesh as well as her own God-guided story all of which were great encouragements.
If you could capture hope in a picture, an image of CUP would be the perfect example. Within the CUP program encompasses aid for destitute women, the mothers of the children of CUP, who were left homeless on the streets at the local mosque. As the women are welcomed off the streets, they’re provided with a place to stay, taught skilled trade and their children are taken care of; the situation in itself is hope come to life.
My experiences at CUP will always be ones that I look back upon with joy. When we were told that we were going to be spending our mornings with the children, I couldn’t help but be excited. I can remember in our first morning with the kids, as we were sitting in on the day’s lessons an energetic little boy ran up to me and with a huge smile on his face, happily sat in my lap; his name was Moona, a wonderfully adorable little trouble maker of a boy and this was the start of our time at CUP. Every day we would come in and be with the kids, sit and play, sing and dance, love and enjoy each other’s company. There was always so much joy in the room; smiles on faces, playful laughter and the pure hearts of the children and from them to us and us to them, joy was shared and lived. As the days progressed, the quieter children would become more open, less hesitant to interact with us and in a way the opening of their hearts began to break mine. They began to trust us, enough to allow us to hold them in our laps, enough to hold them close and feel the beat of their hearts against ours; the willingness of them to embrace us was an overwhelming demonstration of pure, powerful love, possibly a taste of what God has and desires with us.
The time at CUP has sparked a thought shifting journey in understanding love and the power of it. I’m thankful and blessed to have been able to spend time with the people and children at CUP. I hope and pray that God will be blessing the ministry and program that He has started.
Written by David Kim