Children are really helping a lot with building relationships. Especially when they look different than most of the other kids, like having blond hair instead of black. At least that’s the case for us. When people walk by, we often hear them saying “Oh, how cute!” And so it’s not difficult to start a conversation.
Our neighbors who have a car repair shop also like Anna (and of course also Amy) a lot. Almost every day Anna spends some time with them (mostly when I pick Amy up from preschool). Often the father of the car repair shop owner takes Anna for a walk or they spend the time together in the shop. So Anna gets to know many people we do not necessarily know … That’s also the case with the staff of the Ministry of Sports, which is on the opposite side of the street from our house. There Anna was invited to a birthday last Thursday, and I had to take her there. Some employees of the Sports Ministry wanted to give a surprise to a colleague and therefore invited Anna. Since they only knew Anna, not me, they always talked with our neighbors who passed all the information on to me. When we arrived on Thursday, we have already been waited for and where brought to a small room, because Anna’s visit should be a surprise. They gave us a present that we had to hand over to the woman who celebrated her birthday (a funny drawing of her with Anna). Then we and some employees walked to her office with a big birthday cake and the present, sang a birthday song to her, handed over the present and ate the cake. She was very happy having Anna as a surprise guest. They call Anna lovingly “Shiao De”. “De” comes from “Deguo” (“Germany”), whereas “De” also means “virtue” and “Shiao” simply means “small”.
It’s really nice to see how God also uses our children in order to increase and deepen our relationships here in the neighborhood!