14-year-old boy demonstrates true nature of giving spirit

Let me tell you about my friend Tiyesi. What a sweet little guy who has a heart of gold.

Tiyesi is a 14-year-old boy who lives in the safe haven home that we lived at for the last two months. He is a boy who can make you laugh at any time — a boy who loves deeply, a boy who is honest, respectful and so intentional.

Besides all of that, he also was a little trickster and liked to make fun of us for not having power with his little flashlight. From the very first day he opened up to me and shared some of his story, I knew he was so special, but he really set the bar high the day before we left.

I have mentioned before about my team and me buying lots of goodies and walking down the road to hand them out. We had a huge bag of cookies and suckers left over, so we went out the day before we left one last time. Tiyesi came along.

I have seen him so excited over receiving sweets and cookies, but I’ve never seen him more excited than the times he got to hand out sweets and cookies to people on the streets. He loved it. He would run to people and hand them sweets with the biggest smile on his face. He is a giver — a giver who loves deeply.

We walked down the road, and people started coming from all directions. I’m telling you, word travels fast when two girls are walking down the street handing out free food. Tiyesi was so patient with us, and he translated and took care of Courtney and I.

On our way back home, he still wanted to hand things out to people who were passing by, but we ran out of things quick. He asked me for his cookies I was holding for him, and he started handing them out to the people who were passing by. He gave up his own cookies (something he probably doesn’t get often) to give to others.

My heart was so happy. He loves Jesus, and that was so evident in him and the way he lived.

The point of this blog was to write about Tiyesi, a face that I will never forget, but I also want to tell you about some other things that I’ll never forget about that happened that day.

As Tiyesi handed out cookies to a group of guys, they started fist fighting. The ones who had gotten some of the cookies started doing backflips. Seeing this hit me so hard. Knowing that people were fighting over a few cookies broke my heart.

We met a group of young kids walking down the street, and we handed them some cookies, and one little girl was jumping up and down screaming because she was so excited. It is the little things that mean so much to these people.

This was one of the sweetest days, only because I got to see someone who was so deserving of receiving freely give.

Keia Blair is a Seymour native who attends Cincinnati Christian University. During her nine-month mission trip around the world, she is submitting a series of blogs that will appear in The Tribune. Send comments to [email protected].