Saturday, January 18, 2020

January 15th

On January 15th, 2010 Nick and I set off on our first flight to Ethiopia and ten years ago today we met our daughters Hermela and Meron for the first time.  For all we knew it would be our only trip there.

January traditionally is a month of new beginnings.  We commonly look forward with hope to a fresh start as we resolve to do better and be better in the new year.

It was on New Year’s Day last year that I sat dreaming with my friend Heidi about what God had in store next for us. We both have hearts for serving orphaned and vulnerable children and we felt like God was calling us to do more.

The very next day, on January 2, 2019, our friend Misikir messaged me about possibly helping the children of Gondar and Bridge of Hope Orphanage. I didn’t know how exactly we could help, but felt like God had been preparing us for such a time as this. Nick and I made plans to speak with Misikir on January 15th, 2019 to see what we could do.

On our call with him we realized the most immediate need the children at Bridge of Hope had was for food, so we asked him to please find out how much it cost to feed the children and we committed to pray in the meantime..........

If you’ve followed along this past year, you know that God has worked in amazing ways to establish Haddis Ministries, bring us supporters and begin to change the lives of the children in our program

Just last week, on January 11th, 2020, almost 10 years to the day from our first trip to Ethiopia, I landed back in the country I love  for the eleventh time with co-founders Jeanie and Aimee and our first official Haddis Ministries’s team.

While we were in Gondar, Jeanie, Aimee and I had the chance to meet with Tsion, the director of Bridge of Hope Orphanage, over dinner. She began to tell us of their struggles. As she spoke, she told us that unbeknownst to us, on January 15, 2019, at the very time of Nick and my call with Misikir, she had initiated a day of fasting and prayer for her staff. The situation had become dire and there was no more money to buy food for the children. They were out of options and were petitioning the Lord for help.

She told us that following our phone call, Misikir had gone to her and told her about our conversation and how we were inquiring about feeding the children. She said it was an answer to their prayers. 

As she recounted the story, I was overcome with emotion as I realized the significance of this information. To know that God had appointed me, Jeanie, Aimee and our families to help meet this need was overwhelming. It made me feel so special to think that the God of the Universe used me to be a part of this. 

I realized in that moment that it was actually January 15th, 2020. It was one year from the day that the staff had prayed for help and 10 years to the day of my first trip, and now here we sat, in Ethiopia marveling together at what God had done. 

As I look back at the way God has weaved this story, I am truly so amazed and humbled that He chose me to be on this path and be connected with the beautiful people of Gondar, Ethiopia.

I do not believe for one second that all of these events happening on January 15th are coincidences. I without a doubt believe that God still speaks clearly to us. I believe that he has used this date as a way of confirming His call and I will be forever grateful that He has fulfilled this desire in my heart to care for orphaned and vulnerable children.

God is continuously revealing his plan. In the midst of each day we tend to only look at our present circumstances.  This past week I feel like God gave me a glimpse of the big picture and how every meeting, every event, every interaction has a purpose. God is always with us and faithful to guide us. 

In college I had the verse Proverbs 3:5-6 posted on my computer. I saw it most days as I worked on my studies. 

Proverbs 3:5-6

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding in all your ways acknowledge him and he will make your paths straight. 

Even when I do not fully understand or know exactly how something is going to work out, I know that I can trust God to guide me and when we follow His lead we find that He writes the most beautiful stories.

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