Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Countdown to Haiti - 4 Days

As I count down the days until we board the plane for this tiny country, I want to share with you ways the Lord is working in me to prepare to serve in Haiti. Today's focus? "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength."

The soul of a person is the core of who they are - their character, personality, talents, desires, and dreams. In our preparation for this trip, soul equates to spiritual preparation. We have memorized verses, talked about the best ways to share the Gospel, and talked about how to meet the Haitians where they're at within their culture.  Live what I believe. Be ready to give an account for the hope that is in me. Love others in such a way that they can see Jesus in me.

While I was working on my book, I spent time in Manitou Springs, Colorado studying with DiAnn Mills, Jerry B. Jenkins, and Doc Hensley. I'll never forget the encouragement and challenge Jerry gave me as he read my story...

"Kariss, my generation has a tendency to throw money at problems to solve them. But your generation? You go. You aren't content to sit still. It's the difference between doing church and being the church. Both our generations have a lot to learn from one another." Man, how convicting. But, it's true.

It's time for the church to be the church, time for His body to be active.We are commanded to share the Gospel, to help the less fortunate. We live in a country overflowing with plenty while half the world starves. I wish I had answers. There isn't an easy fix, but we can all do something.

How can we fix a culture that is trapped in confusion and chaos in a week?

Quick answer? I can’t. My team can’t. But, we can be faithful. We can focus on reaching one. We can go. My prayer is that the Lord will grow me and that I won't abdicate my responsibility and privilege to be His hands and feet to a broken world.

But, that never comes without sacrifice. Inevitably on these short-term mission trips, we go to serve and return changed.  These trips are part of the refining process, a beautiful part of the story that the Lord uses to transform us more into His likeness and give us His heart. The change that will come as a result of this trip scares me. I know after seeing how these people live, I will never be able to return to the naivety of my comfortable, American lifestyle.

I once heard that if we had but a drop of the Lord’s compassion, it would break our hearts. I’m praying that the Lord will break my heart for what breaks His. As Hosea 6:1-3, says, the Lord breaks us so that He can bind up our wounds, revive us, and restore us. All for His glory.

No matter how He chooses to transform me, bring it on! I pray for life change on the part of the Haitians, whether we get to see tangible results or not. And, I pray that none of my team returns the same. I wanna give it all I got. Love with all I am. Lord, I'm Yours. Have Your way.

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