Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Those I Couldn't Pray For

I have been honored with the privilege of praying with patients before their eye exams.  This job is very much a roller coaster of emotions.  The joy that we see from people every day that have next to nothing is amazing!  When asking, “how can I pray for you,” my favorite response has been, “God is in control of everything.”  What an amazing faith!
But these aren’t the stories I want to share with you tonight.  Tonight, I want to tell you about the grandmother and grandson in the picture on this post.  It had been a good morning.  We had prayed with many patients, and it was still early.  On the bench in front of me sat a little boy and his frail grandmother.  It wasn’t uncommon to see people leading the elderly to be seen by the doctors.  What was uncommon was a child of this age being an escort.  I approached them with a usual greeting, and waited for my interpreter ( the local pastor) to fill in the blanks.  This time, he didn’t come back with a usual reply.  Pastor St. Verty proceeded to tell me that this was a grandmother and grandson.  We had many blind people come through, so I wasn’t shocked hen he told me she was blind.  What shocked me was that he told me the grandson was also blind.  We questioned how it was possible for him to lead his grandmother to the clinic.  I thought there was no way that this could be true.  I waved my hand about a foot from his face.  There was no response.  I waved it two inches from his face.  He could follow my hand, but not focus.  My heart dropped.  How could a blind grandmother and grandson make it to the mission, much less out of the front door?  I felt my throat starting to choke up, and I felt tears welling in my eyes.  These were (and still are) the only people I have had to step away from, and have someone else pray for.
What I have encountered in Haiti is nothing short of inspiring, but also heart breaking.  I’m amazed at a faith that most of us could never comprehend.  Our God is truly a great and wonderful God, and He is constantly teaching me that my perspective on life can be very out of focus.  Thank God for the iTeam, and all that they do.  They truly define a servant’s heart.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Josh's Trip

In 4 short days, I will be heading to Haiti to "get a feel" for what could potentially be our new home.  I will be working with the same eye surgery team (different members) as Tara did.  The difference is that Tara is a registered nurse, and while I have some medical background, am nowhere near as skilled in this area, so I'm not sure at all what I will be doing while I'm there.  After the busyness of the past few weeks, I'm finally starting to get excited about the trip!
On a separate note, Tara and I are constantly amazed and reminded that God is in control.  With the time between the time we hope to move and now, we have been concerned that the excitement would go away, and that we would start questioning God's calling in our lives.  God continues to bring encouragement and reminders into our lives.  Today, our pastor gave a message about the Israelites wandering in the dessert.  The message was titled "The Space Between."  He talked about how what should have been an 11 day journey from Mt. Hebron to Israel took 39 years.  When God speaks through our pastor to us, Tara and I have a tendency to look at each other and giggle a little because we know that He is sustaining us through the down times.  Today's message did come with a warning though.  During their time in the dessert, God supplied the Israelites with manna to keep them fed.  When they grew tired of the manna, they complained to God that they didn't have meat, and that they would have been better off in Egypt where they had plenty of meat to eat.  God gave them meat, but had this to say in Numbers 11:18-20, "18“Say to the people, ‘Consecrate yourselves for tomorrow, and you shall eat meat; for you have wept in the ears of the LORD, saying, “Oh that someone would give us meat to eat! For we were well-off in Egypt.” Therefore the LORD will give you meat and you shall eat. 19‘You shall eat, not one day, nor two days, nor five days, nor ten days, nor twenty days, 20but a whole month, until it comes out of your nostrils and becomes loathsome to you; because you have rejected the LORD who is among you and have wept before Him, saying, “Why did we ever leave Egypt?”’”
I think I can speak for Tara in saying that we are both taking the message given today to heart.  Here is the sermon:

Look for pictures from the trip after I return!