Part 2 of 3: Miracle Money & A Teachers Sacrifice
Highlights from Pucusana Trip: Fall 2018
Part 2 of 3: Miracle Money and a teachers sacrifice
Within the first few days of being in Pucusana, I’d seen what was once covered in darkness turn back toward the light. The school and many of its students were “back to normal”.
Never in my life have I actually felt the prayers of others strengthening me each day. And never have I seen so many behavioral problems with the students go away in such short a time. Our God is good. Our God is faithful. And our God is present. How blessed are we to have such a loving and kind God. He came to claim back what was His and gave the teachers and I a fighting chance to teach the students about God and good morals.
One huge problem still remained, replacing the stolen money.
Each day I checked my fundraiser and each day the money increased. By the end of week one, all $3,000 was raised! By the middle of week two a total of $3,500 had been donated! More than enough money had been given; a thousand more than what was stolen! 15 different people, all different ages ranging from their early twenties to late sixties donated to help my partner ministry. Words cannot express my gratitude to these individuals. I was blow away by their generosity. It was Christmas times 10!
Isaac, one of the teachers, and I were the only ones who knew. We kept it a secret until we were able to physically get the money to Peru. We worked hard at the end of week two to get the money in cash in Lima City. It was a small nightmare working with Western Union to send all the money and we did end up having to take part of it out by ATM, but with my husbands help, we got all the money.
The following Monday, I gave all the money to the school Principal. She was shocked, speechless and thrilled. After a few moments of ‘taking it all in’ she looked at me and said, “We can finally pay the teachers”.
Now I have to explain how incredible these Teachers are.
Since the moment the operations budget was stolen, the school Principal told the teachers of the situation. She asked them to take half-salaries until she could recover the funds. They agreed. To pay their half-salaries, the Principal stopped taking a salary all together and was practically harassing parents to pay their monthly dues on time.
A week before I gave the money to the Principle, she had a meeting with all her teachers. They discussed how there was abnormal amount of students struggling in class and not doing their homework this year. This was because the majority of the student’s parents are not home when their children return from school. Some parents could care less about their kids let alone if they did their homework. So the teachers brainstormed ideas on how to help the students. They came to the conclusion to offer a study hall after school everyday for two hours. Two teachers would run the study hall each day meaning that two times a week, each teachers wouldn’t leave work till 5pm. You must understand that all of the teachers live at least two hours away in Lima. On top of that, the school couldn’t afford to pay them overtime for this work even if the operations budget was recovered.
So needless to say all the teachers were left with a difficult choice to make. Less time at home, no extra pay, more work and all that while still only receiving half salaries.
The teachers had a few days to think it over. During that time, the school had completely run out of money and the Principle had to ask the teachers to wait over the following weekend to get paid. This was a very stressful time for everyone involved.
I felt guilty for keeping my secret during those few days. I knew the money had been raised but I didn’t know if I could get it physically there in time before I left. The Principle talked about taking a loan out against her house to pay the teachers for the rest of the year. She’d have to close the school the following year to recover. I prayed a lot those nights; that Isaac and I would be able to retrieve the money without problem and that God would work in the teachers’ hearts.
And as you already know, we were able to get the money there, just a few days later.
When all the teachers came back together the following week, all of them committed full heartedly to the study hall program. That just shows you the kind of people I have the pleasure of working with through my partner ministry in Pucusana. To give even more of themselves knowing they would most likely receive nothing in return is true sacrifice.
The Principal was playfully mad at me when I gave her the money because she had to ask so much of the teacher’s just days before. And here I knew all along the money was available. But when all was said and done, I believe God intended this to happen just the way it did. Making that sacrifice was not easy for any of the teachers. I can imagine the conversations they had with their families, fearful about money and angry about their job’s time commitment. But for some reason, all of them willingly chose to do the study hall program knowing what it would cost them and just hoping God would come through. And He did! Just a few days later! We were able to pay the teachers their full salaries and tell them about the miracle God preformed. Everyone celebrated over a nice lunch the day before I left.
God asked the teachers to make a sacrifice even if they weren’t fully aware that’s what was happening. And they did. On trust and hope alone. And God blessed them two fold for their willingness to serve His kingdom through our Christian school.
End of part 2 of 3