The flowerbed of smiles

By Lucy Wambui.

As I take time to write this article, I wish it were possible to continue writing forever, for it is impossible to express the joy and love shared in L’Arche in a thousand years. If L’Arche were a farm, it would have been the biggest producer of love berries. People visit for a day and they always wish to come back and stay forever. Most of us, as human beings, we all want to eradicate poverty. This can only be achieved by being joyful and loving, which you will always find in L’Arche when you interact and share life with the brethren.

We as the brethrens of L’Arche Kenya, regardless of our abilities or disabilities we feel rich. There is always a reason for one to smile, which is bonded by love. It feels wonderful to know that you are appreciated just the way you are. Happiness is like a permanent part of us.

It is not easy to find true joy if you are not open. Come and meet Muhoro; last week we were preparing a flower garden in Effatha home. It was on a Saturday and as usual, weekends are resting days for the core members. That very morning was exceptional; we had planned to have an activity of digging and preparing a small garden so that we would plant some flowers. Each core-member was asked what they wanted to do. Some chose to cook, others to clean the compound but for Muhoro was different. He hurriedly went and took some jembes and headed straight to the garden. I worked closely with him and he could tell interesting stories about digging. Digging is not my favourite thing to do especially during the weekend but this one was made so beautiful by the stories and the jokes of Muhoro.

It took us about three hours in the garden. I never realised that we had taken that long. Everyone in the garden, the assistants and core-members were telling stories and laughing. The passers by were wondering what we were happy about, but the smiles of each person, the love of each one of us, the jokes of Muhoro made all the difference. It was not just digging like any other person would do, but it was digging with love, joy and unity and I felt so blessed. So many times I used to dig but this was extraordinary. I felt good, I enjoyed unlike the other days.

Are you willing to have such an experience with us? It is now the highest time to do it. It’s a big lesson for me that love conquers everything. A day can’t end without a hug from Kababa, a smile from Mwihaki, a kiss from Muhoro, a joke from Gathoni and a story from Paul. They are the best teachers of love, which is unconditional, pure, true, sincere and heartfelt. This is always a challenge to all of us who we claim that we are “normal”. Share your time with us!!!