Why we go
Our recent trip to Haiti impacted everyone on our team. It has been especially meaningful to hear the stories of those who traveled with me, listening to how JESUS spoke to them on our trip. Courtney Carmen is of our team members who shared her experience with her home church. She is the sister of Chelsea Landis, and she traveled down with her mom, 3 sisters and sister-in law. Here’s what Courtney shared: “Trying to recap my trip has really been hard. I think sometimes we have a tendency to want to take an experience, wrap it up pretty, stick a stamp on it and say this is what it was for me. I want to do that with Haiti. I want to say I’ll be returning in 2 months to start a feeding program or that I plan to begin the adoption process.
I want to say something. But the truth is I’m leaving Haiti with inconclusive thoughts of where to go next with the things I saw and the emotions I felt.
When people say its something you need to see to believe, they’re telling the truth. The desperation is real. We saw starving children. Kids that helped us paint that were full of energy in the morning only to be lying down famished for water by mid-afternoon – water they couldn’t afford and water that was 2 miles away. We saw children of voo-doo practitioners and hand-mixed cement with a voo-doo priest that was there because he was interested in learning about JESUS. We saw deep poverty and great spiritual need, but we saw hope.
We saw JESUS in the eyes of the Haitians. They love HIM and they are not distracted. They are desperate for GOD and they rely on HIS power.
We have so many stories of how GOD revealed HIMSELF to us this week. He showed HIS love in the natural spring they found below the surface on the same plot of land as the church. They are installing the pump as I speak.
Instead of sealing up the box on this experience – it is wide open for me. I don’t know how GOD is going to use it, but I’m grateful for the opportunity and I have hope that HE will reveal it to me in time.
The one thing I confidently take away from this experience is that when we say yes to JESUS, admit we don’t have all the answers and step out of ourselves and into HIM – HE meets us there. When we believe and trust HIS Word and do what HE asks – HE transforms us.
For a long time I felt HIS nudges, but I didn’t move. I had a form of Godliness, but didn’t believe HIS power. I trusted the tangible, placed my bet on the world and answers it provided.
For me – the transformation started small. HE slowly nudged me to start trusting HIM even when I couldn’t see what HE was doing. I started to say yes. I started to see that HIS power was real. JESUS is real and HE came to this earth to set captives free. HE is still doing that today.
In a 1st world country we are easily distracted. We are often desperate for the wrong things and things themselves quickly become our idols. We find ourselves not really needing GOD because we have our own cares and answers to replace HIM. We discredit HIS power.
In Haiti they are desperate and rely on GOD for the life-sustaining water HE provides. I can’t fix the needs in Haiti, only GOD can do that. I know that they are spiritually rich.
So I encourage you in a world of busyness and distractions to say yes to HIS nudges. Listen for them. Say yes to GOD each day in the little things and HE will start to do the big things in you. He is real and he has the power to five us a grand new identity in HIS name.
JESUS does that when we say yes. HE doesn’t just kind do it. HE redeems us, gives us peace and loves us abundantly.
Before going to Haiti I felt like I didn’t really want to go and I had every reason to not to. It was really hot, it was a tough time financially and there was the outbreak of chickungunya. But I know GOD calls us to be HIS hands and feet, so I said yes.
And JESUS showed up in big ways that I cant even describe and HE’s been doing that for a while now.
Whatever HE’s nudging you to do – say yes. Maybe its not missions. Maybe it’s sponsoring a child or loving a hurting family next door. Maybe it’s seeking help for a struggling marriage or trusting GOD with your addiction.
Whatever it is – trust that JESUS will show up for you. Believe that HE has the power to restore you and give you peace. Because HE does."