I was just a girl.
I watched shows like Brady Bunch and Little House on the Prairie like they were going out of style. Chips and dip and pink frosted cupcakes were my after-school vices of choice.
But God was at work in my little girl heart, even though I had no history of hearing His still small voice, even though I had no knowledge of what was to come.
Because He knew.
He was molding my heart, making it His. He was placing in me the deepest desire to see, to help, to understand need when I saw it.
So what does any of this have to do with Brady Bunch and Little House on the Prairie? Let me explain.
Marcia Brady was kind and witty, a leader at home and at school, she wasn’t afraid to light the fire in her bones. And Laura Ingalls Wilder captivated my heart like no other – when she battled mean old Nellie on the playground, when she was desperate for Manly to call her Beth, and when she became mama to sweet baby Rose. But it was the moments in-between Marcia and Laura that stole my little girl heart for a lifetime.
Yes, this is what I watched in the in-between.
I was just a girl. No credit cards. No financial means to make a monthly payment. No independence to make that phone call. And didn’t even think to engage my parents about this tug on my heart to sponsor a child.
Those were the earliest days, the earliest recollections of this calling that’s come full circle.
Through the years, time and time again, this commercial and countless others like it, stopped me dead in my tracks. There was something about the children that called out the depths of my little girl heart.
Time passed. Lots of time passed.
Christian Children’s Fund television commercials morphed into Compassion International blog posts from Guatemala, Tanzania, Haiti, and elsewhere.
Blog posts morphed into Facebook posts from my brother’s friend adopting children from an orphanage in Haiti.
Facebook posts morphed into a seemingly random opportunity to impact real children from that orphanage in Haiti.
One random opportunity to impact children in a Haitian orphanage morphed into planning a family vacation which included a one-day stop in Haiti.
And sponsorship of ONE little girl and correspondence with ONE little boy in Haiti morphed into the clicking of ONE little button that meant – yes, it’s time to GO. I’m beyond ready.
I’ve been dying to tell you, jumping out of my skin with excitement since I quietly clicked that button July 1, 2013.
I’m going to Haiti.
The dream, the calling, it never went away. In fact, it only became stronger, clearer with time.
So I’m going, and soon.
I’ll be visiting our little girl and little boy in Haiti on a sponsor trip with Compassion International. And blessings will be sure to flow when I get to meet their families, extended families, friends, and communities they do life with on a daily basis.
I already know what you’re going to ask…this isn’t so much a mission trip as it is a love mission. I won’t be building water wells, houses, schools or bridges. But I will be flying thousands of miles to let people from the poorest country in the western hemisphere know – they are loved, cared for, worthy of absolutely anything and everything. I’m prepared to face the brutal realities of poverty like never before. But I’m also prepared to receive incomprehensible gifts of joy, peace, hope and love like I’ve never known.
Before I go, I’m hoping you’ll join me as I review the steps I’ve already traveled to get to this place. As I get closer to leaving, I’ll share insight into the little and big ways I’ve prepared to go, what I’m excited about, what I’m scared about, what I’m hoping for and believing in. Because retracing the paths God’s had you on, and preparing to walk down them even further – is pretty cool. It makes His plans evident, and gives us hope that He’s ordained every day in advance.
He’s prepared a table, a place for each one of us.
I’m confident he’s set this table for me.
And I’m ready to go. So join me, will you?
As with my #31Days series, I’ll put a graphic for this series on the blog home page. Find the graphic and click to link back here where I’ll include links to every post I write between now and when I return from Haiti. Whether you’re joining me live, in real time, or after the fact when I’m home and settled back into everyday life as I know it, it’s an honor to have you be a part of this life-changing journey.
Other posts in this month-long series: