In August 2015 last year my pastor ran across the state raising money to feed orphans in Haiti. After he finished a good friend of ours felt moved to continue the movement and pick up where Pastor Jim left off. So Tim ran 10 miles every day for 10 days or something crazy like that. Tim finished his stint by posting a video to Facebook where he called out a couple of friends and challenged them to do something sacrificial of their own to raise money for meals and awareness for the orphans in Haiti.
I felt incredibly pulled. His video moved me to tears and I couldn’t let it go. I wanted to support the work being done and encourage those that were doing it. I couldn’t commit to 10 miles a day but I could do something. I could keep a commitment which was something that God was working on with me. So I committed to 3 miles a day for 10 days.
It was exciting for the first couple of days and then the middle ones were a struggle to get up in the morning and keep my word. It was wonderful how every other day or so a friend would join me on my run and it was just wonderful how God used them during that time. I don’t know if my efforts had any impact on anyone or if it helped raise any additional money but my oldest daughter saw what I was doing and we had some really awesome conversations. She initiated a Lemonade Stand to raise money and I think she raised around $11. I matched it. It was really nothing but I did what I had the capacity to do at the time.
So the missions team went to Haiti, had an incredible time, and came back. Life went back to normal for me. I dropped off the map with running as I usually do when winter hits. Then a couple of months ago the church announced that they will be partnering with Convoy of Hope again and taking a team back to Haiti this October 2016. I have never been on a missions trip and while I’ve always thought about how cool it would be it just was never something I felt was my time to do yet. I figured I’d go someday when one of the girls got old enough and I’d tag along on theirs.
Something was different. Seeing the videos and hearing Pastor talk about the trip for this year something inside me told me that there’s something in Haiti that I need to go receive. With all of the crazy changes that have happened inside me and within my life this past year I see God using this somehow as a continuation of the process he’s been taking me through and also an equipping for great things to come. When contemplating putting in an application for the trip I felt God telling me, You need to decided whether or not you’re committed to going because if you put in an application, you’re going. This was a serious, intentional decision.
So I filled out the application, showed up to the first mandatory meeting, and just found out last week that I’m going with the team. We’re going with the entire purpose of loving on orphans. My heart is going to be flung wide open and I really have no idea what to expect or what I’m getting myself into. I don’t even care. There’s lot of meetings and preparations ahead between now and then. The leaders are incredible and I’m really looking forward to building bonds with them and the others in the team. I’m also trying to wrap my head around this even being real and imagining traveling to Haiti and being there. One step at a time.
There’s some awesome fundraising going on. Folks are selling stuff, offering services, and there’s a Freedom Center Team fundraising page set up through Convoy of Hope. I am forever grateful for any support through donations, prayers or even encouraging notes! The total cost is $1,700 per person and I’ve already paid the $250 deposit with my application. I’ll be paying for this trip through piano lesson money, my business, and whatever other miscellaneous income comes my way. I’m also going to be doing a whole lot of running this summer and I had the idea of taking pledges per mile. I have to get my butt back into gear and my endurance back up anyhow to prepare for the hot sun and heat.
Thank you, thank you for all off the support. Please be praying for me. Pray for Haiti to be restored and healed, for these sweet lives to know how deeply they are loved. There’s some beautiful faces I’m going to go meet and God has known them and loved them since before the foundations of the world were put into place. He has a purpose for them and I’m praying that I walk with the Holy Spirit and do everything he’s planning for me to do when I go.
Joshua 1:9 “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.”