Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Haiti: A Year Later

January 12, 2010. I sat on my couch with tear filled eyes, unable to believe what I was seeing as images of horror began to flicker across every news station. A small country already in turmoil shaken so violently that we all knew. Thousands upon thousands of lives had been lost. Families already living in extreme poverty had no where to go. Already overflowing orphanages had fallen with the infrastructure. And in the blink of an eye, more children became orphans. For days I sat there every chance I got, almost in a daze, obsessed with the information coming from Haiti. Not since the tsunami had I been so desperate to run into the disaster of a land unknown to me to do something, anything, to help.

As the weeks passed we wanted to find a way to help. Other than financially supporting our favorite organizations that were sending emergency relief to Haiti, we also wanted to be hands on and prayed for a way. We thought maybe even AAB could play a small role in the lives of Haitian orphans following this disaster. But it wasn't to be.

Through the year my heart has remained heavy for those still suffering in Haiti.

January 11, 2011. The night before "A Year Ago Today..." plays out in the media tomorrow, I sit here preparing that still heavy heart for my trip to Haiti.

On Feb. 24 I will travel to Haiti on a mission trip with our church and Global Orphan Project. We will be working with children in the Leogane village and children living in other orphanages throughout the area.

This is not an AAB trip, but it will be beneficial to the operation of AAB.

I am so excited about being led on a mission trip outside of Guatemala by people far more experienced than me. I have never been on an international mission trip outside of Guatemala and I have never been on a mission trip where I wasn't the team leader. It feels a little strange to be six weeks from traveling and having nothing to do but wait, pack and meet the rest of our team at the airport. This is going to be interesting and I'm pretty sure...amazing.

I can't wait to be filled with more knowledge. Seeing extreme poverty in another country first hand and spending time with these children while learning from more experienced directors and ministry leaders will help us be more effective in Guatemala.

More than that, I can't wait to wrap my arms around the precious children of Haiti. A year later.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

What it Means to Love

We are on day four of the new year and already this year is shaping up to be much different than the last. As I was driving home this evening I heard a song that I haven't heard in a while. If you've ever read more than a post or two here, you know how much I love music and how it moves me, even songs I may have heard a hundred times before and know by heart.

And so it was today.

"Now I no longer live for myself. Your words are so clear. Help me live it loud enough so they can hear. How could I go back to life as usual? How could I return to who I once was? I just want to take your story to the world 'cause you have shown me what it means to love."

As I listened it was almost as if it was written from my life, through the changes that have come over the last few years and how I desperately want to take this love that comes from Him and live it loudly because there is no way that I could go back to what I was before my eyes were opened to what true need is and before my heart was opened wide enough to really love.

2011 is going to be a very different year. It starts next month with a mission trip that will bring a new country stamp other than Guatemala to my passport and then what I expect to be an exciting and amazing Guatemala mission trip just two weeks later. My prayer...

"Lord, help me live it loud enough so they can hear..."

Facebook readers can view the video here.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

No Resolutions...Just Choices


No occasion justifies hatred; no injustice warrants bitterness. I choose love. Today I will love God and what God loves.


I will invite my God to be the God of circumstance. I will refuse the temptation to be cynical...the tool of the lazy thinker. I will refuse to see people as anything less than human beings, created by God. I will refuse to see any problem as anything less than an opportunity to see God.


I will live forgiven. I will forgive so that I may live.


I will overlook the inconveniences of the world. Instead of cursing the one who takes my place, I'll invite him to do so. Rather than complain that the wait is too long, I will thank God for a moment to pray. Instead of clinching my fist at new assignments, I will face them with joy and courage.


I will be kind to the poor, for they are alone. Kind to the rich, for they are afraid. And kind to the unkind, for such is how God has treated me.


I will go without a dollar before I take a dishonest one. I will be overlooked before I will boast. I will confess before I will accuse. I choose goodness.


Today I will keep my promises. My debtors will not regret their trust. My associates will not question my word. My husband will not question my love. And my child will never fear that his mother will not come home.


Nothing is won by force. I choose to be gentle. If I raise my voice may it be only in praise. If I clench my fist, may it be only in prayer. If I make a demand, may it be only of myself.


I am a spiritual being...After this body is dead, my spirit will soar. I refuse to let what will rot, rule the eternal. I choose self-control. I will be drunk only by joy. I will be impassioned only by my faith. I will be influenced only by God. I will be taught only by Christ. I choose self-control.

Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. To these I commit my day (my year, my life). If I succeed, I will give thanks. If I fail, I will seek his grace. And then, when this day is done, I will place my head on my pillow and rest.

Max Lucado
When Love Whispers Your Name