About Me

Van Walton

Fun Facts about Van Walton

My favorite smell: The way the earth smells after it rains.

My favorite sound: The first notes of a grand symphony.

My favorite way to relax: Sitting anywhere outside - on my front porch, on my deck, or by the lake, early in the morning with my first cup of coffee.

My favorite birthday dessert: a Peach cobbler baked by my husband. He’s my fave chef!

I will not eat: Avocado. They turn my stomach into a volcano that never erupts.

Technology I couldn't live without and why: My laptop - it takes me anywhere I want to go.

One thing that makes me smile: My sons' faces!

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My Resources



My book, From the Pound to the Palace, is available for $10
from Proverbs 31 Ministries.


Pound to Palace


My book, Little Halos, is available for $5.99 from Proverbs
31 Ministries.


Little Halos


Proverbs 31 Ministries












Links




Sponsor a Child in Jesus Name with Compassion

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Saturday, January 19, 2008

HOW IT ALL BEGAN


Look at the faces of these children. Aren’t they absolutely beautiful? I recently met these boys and girls at a Latina women’s ministry event, a breakfast, where I spoke.

I fell in love that Saturday morning! Who wouldn’t? These happy faces reminded me of my neighbors and classmates when I was 6,7, & 8, living in South America. They remind me of the days when God began to work in my heart, preparing me for His plan for my life.

Whenever I wonder if I am truly walking the path God laid out for me, I take a journey into my past looking for my credentials. Normally credentials is what we do to gain a position, like go to school and earn a diploma, participate in a conference and bring home a certificate, or go to the gym and reach a goal, maybe even win a trophy.

Those are great credentials to be able to list on a resume and I am happy I have put getting-my-credentials-so-I-can-find-a-job days behind me. Don’t get me wrong. There is always room for improvement. I still take myself to “school” from time to time to improve my teaching, leadership, and communication skills.

The other kind of credentials is God-equipped, not human-earned. Let me give you an example. When I was in the 4th grade I attended school two blocks from my house where I lived in Bogotá, Colombia. I was one of the few bilingual students. Most of my classmates were children of parents who worked in the American embassy, the oil business, or the mission field. Having been born in South America, lucky me, I could speak Spanish and English.

I developed my Spanish easily because my play mates were Colombian. I played in the park with my neighbors, attending Sunday school with the local children (little girls and boys who look just like the children in the picture), and attended parties in the homes of the men and women who worked with my dad. Whenever I found myself outside my home, I spoke Spanish.

One day two young handsome teachers arrived in our school. I will never forget them. They had recently graduated from college in the US and, looking for adventure, found teaching positions in my school. I remember my dad said, “Those two young men are progressive.” I didn’t understand. Today I do.

They developed an after-school program for the children in the neighborhood – actually these children were not considered neighbors because they lived at the end of the road, on the back side of the hill. They were the “poor people.” It didn’t matter to my newly arrived heroes. In their hearts, “All children deserved an education.” They got permission from the school board to use a few classrooms in the afternoon, after school, to educate the “poor children.”

There was a glitch, though. Mr. S and Mr. B did not speak Spanish. They needed a translator. They picked me! Off we trekked to the squatters’ hill to invite children to school. Thus began my teacher training. Under the leadership of my favorite elementary school teachers, I tutored my peers, neighbors and children just like me, but years and miles apart in socio economic advantage. Believe me – I grew up knowing- life is not fair. For me school became the time of day when I could help my newly acquired friends and watch them learn their alphabet and numbers.

I am not sure how long the SBS (initials stand for the names of the young men whose vision took illiterate children and paired them with those who could encourage them to learn) school lasted. I just know that a little seed – a dream to be a teacher, landed in my heart and began to grow. I never let go of that desire. I wanted my very own classroom and I dreamed of helping others achieve their dreams.

Fast forward. I moved to the United States, graduated from college with a certificate to teach, and began my career. I thought God’s plan for my life had been fulfilled. Little did I know, He had not finished! There was more to come - - lots more!

End of chapter 1.

Come back Monday for Chapter 2 - “THE REST OF THE STORY”

4 comments:

Heather@Mommymonk said...

Hi Van - I just love your blog. The jungle theme is awesome! Thanks for stopping by and reading my article about depression. It encouraged me to hear you say you might use it to minister to other women. That's what it's all about.

Celly B said...

Van,
What an exciting post. I love hearing stories of how teachers inspired their students to become teachers themselves!
Thank you for your encouraging comment on my blog. I have always really enjoyed writing and have had the dream of writing. I also love digging into God's Word. I don't much about ebooks, though. Could you point me in the direction of some resources?
Thanks.

Laura said...

What a rich history you have! God has molded you into such a special lady, using your gift of language to touch so many. You are so faithful to use this gift in His service. It takes a special person to recognize this calling, especially at the young age you were when first used in this way. Blessings.

Melissa said...

Van,

Precious children indeed! I just love reading your posts. And I'm so proud of you and everything you are doing to reach your Latina sisters. You are a blessing!

Love you my friend,
Melissa