It was a two years today that we were pulling out of Jaco, loaded down on the bus, heading back to the US. Two years ago today that I said goodbye to my sweet Cristian, wondering if God would cross our paths again. Two years ago today, as I saw those boys playing baseball barefoot that I knew, I could no longer sit in my comfortable house in my safe world and do nothing. And it was then that I heard Him ask, can you give? Can you give of your money? Your time? Your heart? And at that point, I had no other option but yes. A resounding yes! I want them to see You! To see You, Lord, in all your glory, all your love, your provision. And that is where Hearts for Jaco was born.
I struggled at first with fear and doubt. You don't need me, God, they have others to help. What paltry offering can I make? I have made such a mess of my life, Lord, surely I will mess this up too. And I was right; God didn't need me. If I didn't act, others would. And yes, on my own, I will surely make a mess of it. But God, in His infinite love and mercy, His grace, allowed me to play a part in His plan for these. And with His wonderful love, he made sure that my heart would be so broken for them that I couldn't not act. And over the past two years, each time I “make a mistake” in my eyes, if I wait on Him, He reveals a perfect plan and shows how that “mistake” can be turned for His glory.
Over the past year, I have watched as, through no power or deed of my own, God has grown this sponsorship program. I watched as He opened the doors to enroll the first three students in school through the program. I have watched as those on the ground in Jaco have poured of their time and resources into helping the kids through their classes. I have watched as the program expanded and included single moms that have little option to support their families without an education. I watched as we graduated our first student, a single mom. I have prayed for God to bring others alongside me and watched as He pulled together a board of directors to help guide and run the organization. And now I sit, in prayer, waiting for the final word from the government as to our application for nonprofit status. I'm not worried. As I told a friend this week, God doesn't have a failure rate. So whatever the outcome to this, God is wholly in control. So as I sit and wait and pray, I look to the future and wonder God's plan for it all. I pray for each and every student that will come through the program. I pray for the others that will be touched by ways we hope to expand the program. I sit and wait, humbled by all God is doing, ready to act in obedience as God guides.