This week, Kelcie and Isaac are sharing about their recent trip to Honduras. If you’ve got a story to share, I’d love to hear it. <>< Katie
by Kelcie Cornett and Isaac Dalton
Honduras has become my second home. Everything about that country holds a special place in my heart. I’ve been traveling there for three summers now, and I can honestly say that each year has shaped me into the person that I am today. Yet, this year’s trip left an impact on me that I will never forget.
A normal day for our team consists of getting up and going to breakfast at our Honduran sister’s house then heading back to the clinic (where we stay) to prepare everything for that days village. We count chips, hotdogs, cookies, and ice cream cones, fill water balloons and pack chairs and canopy’s into the three vehicles that we take to each village. Once we get to the village, our team will play with the kids until our teachers are ready to start their Bible lessons. While they teach, we make hotdog plates to give out to each person in the village and then later on we hand out ice cream cones. After that we pack up and head back down to the clinic and have supper and devotions to finish off the day.
What I love about being in Honduras is that there are zero distractions. No cell phone, Facebook, Twitter, TV, or even radio. It’s just you, your team, and God. When you have nothing to distract you, God can speak to you so clearly. One of the most significant things that I learned is how God can speak to us through music.
When there is music and some powerful lyrics involved, it takes me to a whole new level with my Savior. One of the youth played “10,000 Reasons” by Matt Redman for me while we were in the Atlanta airport waiting for our plane to leave for San Pedro Sula, Honduras. I instantly fell in love with it, and it almost became an anthem for me during the trip. My favorite lines of the song are, “Whatever may pass, and whatever lies before me, Let me be singing when the evening comes….For all your goodness I will keep on singing, 10,000 reasons for my heart to find.” I didn’t really understand what was so special about this song but it resonated in my heart. One of the awesome things about God is that He can take things we don’t understand and use them for the betterment of ourselves.
It was the third day that we had been in Honduras and everything had gone smoothly since our arrival. The village that we were heading to that day is called Bella Vista. It takes about an hour and a half drive up a very steep mountain to get there from where we stay. Originally, we were planning on going to a village that is only about a twenty-minute drive away, but because of a few minor setbacks we decided to head up to Bella Vista instead. Because of the quick switch of plans, the people of Bella Vista had no idea we were coming. Therefore, when we pulled into the open soccer field where we were supposed to set up, no one was there. But this is typical for Honduras; you just learn to go with the flow. Our team had plenty of time to set up the tables, chairs, and tents for the people in the village. We were expecting to have at least 300-400 people, but because of the lack of notice only around 125 showed up. We were in the middle of handing out hotdog plates when a monsoon hit. The rain was coming down fast, making the soccer field that we were in a giant mud pit.
Our team quickly packed everything up and headed to our vehicles to start making the trek out of the mud. I forgot to mention that the soccer field was at the bottom of an 30 to 45 degree hill that lasts for about a mile. After this hill, the rest of the way back to the clinic was downhill. It took us about an hour to get our first vehicle, the van, out of the pit. Most of our team was in it, but there were about five of us who were in the back of the truck that was pulling the rest of the cars out. So we left the van at the top of the hill and ventured back down to get the other car. We were about halfway back up when our wheels started sliding and we ran into a barbed wire fence. On the other side of the fence was about a five to ten foot drop off the side of the mountain, so thank the Lord that the barbed wire did not break, or else we could have been seriously injured.
After we ran into the fence, we were all shaken up a little bit, so we decided we would wait for the men to pull the other car out and go sit in the van. Yet, once we got in the van, our leader told us to hurry in and lock the door behind us. She informed us that our team was in the middle of a prayer meeting. A man with a gun had been peering in and circling the van. He had been making phone calls and had been acting very suspicious. We figured that he was trying to get in touch with his friends so that they could gang up and rob us, maybe even kill us. I have never been so scared for my life. But then everyone in our van started to pray out loud. The funny thing is that not one of us prayed for safety, we all prayed for God’s will to be done, even if that meant harm for us.
Let me back up a little. The night before, our devotion had been on the story of Job. Job was a very wealthy man, but the Bible says that he was blameless and had a deep love for God. God allowed Satan to test Job to prove that Job would still be faithful to God even after he lost all of his material wealth. Therefore, Satan killed all of Job’s livestock and even his children. One would think that Job would be angry with God for allowing all of this tragedy to happen, but Job 1:20 says “Job stood up and tore his robe in grief. Then he shaved his head and fell to the ground to worship.” Job worshiped God even after all of that happened. Our leaders challenged us to pray that God’s will would be done and that we would worship Him, no matter what happened. It was no mistake that a man with a gun was walking around our van that day.
Back to the story, once we had all finished praying, a certain peace just came over the entire van. We knew that God was in control and that His will would be done. It took the next two hours to get the other car up to the top of the hill. By this time it was dark, and in Honduras it is very dangerous to be out past dark, but with that said, the man with the gun never appeared again. He literally vanished.
On the way down the mountain, my leader’s baby, who is 6 months old, started crying uncontrollably, and the only way we thought we could get her to calm down was to sing to her. Our van sang worship songs the entire way back to the clinic. It started off as a way to calm the baby down, but it turned into one of the most powerful worship times I have ever experienced in my life. Our whole team could have been killed just a couple of hours earlier, and here we were, singing praises at the top of our lungs.
But our day did not end there. We made it down the mountain, grabbed some supper, and headed back to the clinic. When we got there, one of our team members started throwing up blood. Some of her limbs were going numb and she couldn’t think clearly, so our leaders and another youth rushed her off to the hospital. The rest of us stayed behind and held a prayer meeting that lasted around an hour and a half. Again, we prayed that God’s will would be done and that He would reign sovereign over the situation. We learned that she had a liver problem, but the hospital fixed her up good as new. She was released within a couple of days.
That day was probably the longest and most stressful day of my life. God tested our team in many ways but I have never been so aware of the Holy Spirit’s presence. The entire day I had the song that God laid on my heart at the beginning of the trip stuck in my head. The lyrics could have not fit more perfectly for each situation that I went through that day,
“Whatever may pass, and whatever lies before me, Let me be singing when the evening comes…For all your goodness I will keep on singing, 10,000 reasons for my heart to find.” – “10,000 Reasons” by Matt Redman
God not only spoke to me through my situations and through His word but also through music. It just shows that when we step back, let His will be done, and be willing to worship Him in the good times and the bad, God can bless us tremendously, just like He did to Job.
“And God blessed the later half of Job’s life more than the first.” -Job 42:12
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