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Dear Friends,

Sometimes our most important realization can come from the simplest of gestures. This blog post on the theme of “a picture is worth 1,000 words” from 2016 Serve to Learn volunteer Nancy Gwany tells about a simple moment spent with the world’s greatest kids, and a profound realization about God’s love for us. 

Serve to Learn is a three-week service trip for youth from all over the world to teach kids in Egyptian villages through a variety of fun games and activities. This summer, there are TWO trips: June 17-July 8 and July 22-Aug 12. Each trip will have both English education sites and health education sites. 

— Nermien

Who’s in this photo?

Some kids from my class and one of the kids from the younger class.

Where was it taken?

The picture was taken in my classroom after the last session. We were just hanging out.

What’s happening in the photo?

I was telling the kids in my class how they were driving me crazy because they keep talking. The younger kid was pinching my cheeks like he always did. They then asked to take a picture of them driving me crazy.

How did you feel when it was taken?

I felt unconditional love. No matter how much these kids misbehaved in class, I still loved them. Nothing they do can change that.

Why do you want to remember this moment?

I want to remember that’s how God loves me. That love I felt for these kids is nothing compared to how much God loves me unconditionally.

If you could help people understand one thing with this photo, what would it be?

Love always wins. I could count all the times the kids would drive me crazy and literally make me want to pull my hair out. But at the end of the day, I’m there to love them and love always wins.

*Names of our children are changed in order to maintain their privacy.

Interested in learning more about Serve to Learn? Check out our page and our video, which gives a snapshot of the program!

If this “a picture is worth a 1,000 words” blog makes you want to read other Serve to Learn stories, here are Pheobe Azer‘s and Ryan Wasson‘s. If that’s not enough, you can read Serve to Learn  interviews with Toni, JohnGabyMinaAndyVeronikaDavidBen, Kirollos, MariamAlex, and Mirelle. You may also enjoy these video interviews with Nadine RoffaellPeter Wassef and Mary Loka.  Any questions you’d like to ask a real human being? Call or email Joyce Lancen at 703-641-8910 or at