Sign Us Up!

donsherrygrayWe made the decision to do missionary work rather abruptly. Our pastor, Rev. Lynn Hyatt at First Baptist Church of Callahan, Florida, announced that they needed people to visit Kenya for a medical missionary trip.

We did not know why, but we looked at each other and said, “We are going there”. We now realize that God was calling us to attend. We saw ourselves as nothing special, nothing and nobodies with unusual histories of life’s trouble. God saw us as his tool to serve.

One thing, we believe, is taken for granted more than anything else in our lives is the invitation that God has given us through Jesus Christ and the opportunities to share the good news. Even as we struggle in remaining faithful in our pursuit of Him, He has remained faithful in pursuing us by reminding us of our desperate need for Him. This time with the Pokot was that reminder for us.

Since our trip our view about life and our experience has changed significantly. We believe that the will of God will never take you where the grace of God will not protect you. We had no fear. To get something you never had, you have to do something you’ve never done before, so we ran to the adventure.

When God takes something from your life, He is not punishing you, but opening your life to receive something better; He will provide you the strengthening experience required making you strong to support the job. That is how we now view our history and life.

We are honored to have been chosen for such an important task. We will never tell ourselves we are too old or unworthy again.

We cannot help but think that God is calling us stronger now than ever before in our relationships with Him; that there are many in this world who have yet to hear the Truth about the God who created them and who loves them and desires a personal relationship with them. We were blessed with the opportunity to take God’s Truth, Jesus Christ, to the Pokot tribe.

We feel that this experience has enriched our lives beyond our wildest dreams and strengthened our relationship with each other and God. Both of us served in a different capacity.

Donald on the evangelism team and I on the medical team. It is disheartening to us, coming from a place with so much focus on health care, that there are places with such a great lack of the simplest treatments.

We found this experience both challenging and enlightening to our ability as senior adults to still serve the Lord and spread the good news of salvation. We are so grateful to have shared this experience together.

Coming home on the plane, we were weary and told ourselves that we were just too old for this. Before we arrived back in the USA, we said, “Let’s sign up for next year”. Now we hope to remain healthy and make this an annual vacation time. It is hard to express in words the internal enlightening that has occurred to both of us but we feel our lives have changed forever and we will never be the same two people who left this small town to serve again. He has made us anew.

There was spiritual warfare to each of us prior to the trip and more when we returned home. As our great team leader, Rev. Doug Hodges told us when we discussed this with him prior to the trip, “I know I am doing something that displeases the evil one, and I find that encouraging”. We now view his efforts as encouragement to continue in this pursuit. Thank you for allowing us to share this with you. We feel like we “paid it forward”, our blessings from above. To us, that is what Acts 1:8, which our church has adopted, is all about.