Focal Passage: Isaiah 49:1-6; 56:3-8; 66:18-20, 23
John and I returned last week from my fifth mission trip to Jamaica. The experience was amazing, and yet heartbreaking. It was amazing to see the growth in the church we work with: Elim Baptist Church has added a Sunday night service, a women’s Tuesday morning prayer and fasting session, a Wednesday night Bible study, and a counseling session for new Christians. They have done this with the Lord’s guidance, and yet without a pastor.
My trip was also heartbreaking because this time I actually was able to visit homes, and I saw so much more poverty than even I knew was in that little community. We saw hunger, children unable to go to school, sick people skipping days of medication to make the medicine last longer. I was overwhelmed by the poverty, and didn’t think I was making any difference in the lives of the Jamaican people.
Then I read today’s focal passage: “Then I said, I have labored in vain; I have spent my strength for nought, and in vain; yet surely my judgment is with the Lord, and my work with my God” (Isaiah 49:4, KJV).
I have my answer. What I must do is exactly what God shows me to do in Elim, St. Elizabeth parish. I will keep going and working in this community, doing what God has for me to do there, and the results are in His hands. He can take my poor efforts and multiply them to help the people in the most efficient way.
God also showed me what was accomplished in our very short five days in Elim: (1) the people at Elim Church heard Spirit-filled preaching from John, my husband, on Sunday morning and night; (2) those at the new start in Junction heard Spirit-filled preaching from J. Brabban, of Chowan University, on Sunday morning, and Elim heard an incredible Bible study from him Wednesday night; (3) Betty Brabban and I did countless blood pressure screenings, one man with stroke level pressure was taken to the hospital, and two to the clinic; (4) Betty did an amazing amount of one-on-one health education in homes; (5) I was able to set up an Emergency Medical Fund so that if great medical needs happen, those who have no money can get to a clinic; and (6) the team prayed for and with many people in Montego Bay and Elim.
Our Lord is moving in Elim, Jamaica, and throughout the world. What we must do is ask Him what He would have us do wherever in the world He sends us.