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Author Archives: Healing Eyes

Heat exhaustion

It was a very hot day today and more than once I thought I would pass out. In this kind of heat it’s hard to concentrate and remain patient. Funny that God is continuing to test my patience with staying financially afloat for the kids. Several times he has the kids ask me about if I get paid to help them. They assume that I do since I am an adult and I show up. When I tell them that I am here to volunteer and show them love they are shocked every time. They scream, Impossible! I like that reaction even though deep down I am fearful of how I’ll keep this up. Today, however, God decided to remind me that he’s in charge and that as long as I keep listening it will be ok. Most likely i’ll have a one time donation coming in soon from a church and also Andy’s social security disability has been approved and I’ll see some of that soon. Perhaps more details than I should share but how can I share the entire story if I never tell my readers the moments where my invisible friend comes through for me!

My prayer for more crafts for the kids is also coming true thanks to some ladies back home who are helping out. Those sort of blessings make me smile:) and I know the kids will smile too…such as my aspiring Flower artist at the club.

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I’m tired a lot still from the heat and today marks the 10 month anniversary of Andy passing away but I won’t give up quite yet. Just keep leaving the bread crumbs and I’ll follow…just please please give me a roof to stay under and some food to stay alive for the kids. So funny! Me and kids! Makes no sense even still!!!!!

Healing Eyes

Perseverance worked yesterday

Much better day with the kids. Hot and muggy but no tears and mean words. The kids were super lovey today. Happy feet gave me the longest hug and told me I was a good person (yes in those exact words).

I brought my bracelet maker today and the kids taught me how to make rubberband bracelets with just my two fingers. The boys actually were the ones most interested and very talented. It was a great motivator for good behavior and manners. it was quite funny, we started with about 5 kids but then when the van arrived with a huge load of kids I said, “quick pack it up before they see”. Otherwise all the kids would be grabbing and it would have been chaotic. One girl really understood me and rushed to quick hide the loom.

There was this small boy who over the week keeps finding me. He pulls out his big piece of paper I had been teaching how to make flowers on. He asks me to show him how to make a new flower each day. So cute and odd how he keeps bringing that piece of paper back to me. I wish I knew his name. He’s one of the few boys who complains about how loud it is there. He wishes everyone would stop screaming all the time.

So yesterday was awful but today was a blessing. I got hugged, loved, and treated nicely:)

The Jeep update: My Jeep is ‘running’ but it needs a tune-up now for the distributor. I won’t complain though because it would be triple the cost if it was a newer jeep. So yay this will only break me by $220. Pray that God will keep providing and doors will keep opening up.

I am thankful for free Wifi courtesy of my awesome neighbors. I am thankful for my girlfriend Renee who is going to be my roomy soon. I am thankful for the sun. I am thankful my Jeep starts. I am thankful for the kids who hug me. I am thankful the mosquitos are not too bitey. I am thankful I have gallons of drinking water. I am thankful for Becca who sends me goodies. I am thankful for Cindy who prays for me. I am thankful for my Parents who are proud of me… and I am thankful for my Olaf who keeps me company at night.

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Healing Eyes

Choking back tears of being hated

Today I was at the boys and girls club of America and it was the first time I actually almost lost it and broke down in tears. It was starting off good, I had the handful of kids working on a craft about ‘Decisions’ and teaching them how to make the right choices in life. One little girl said she couldn’t do that craft because it had a bible verse on it and her mother doesn’t believe in that church stuff. So I dismissed her to not cause trouble.

Each day I bring my own personal crayons in since they don’t have many there and I ask them to treat them nicely and take one crayon at a time. Today I had some troublemakers and they wouldn’t listen and slowly the crayons ended up everywhere. I used it as an example of choices in life, they could choose to be nice or they can choose to be naughty and there are consequences. The crayons were put away.

Then it got bad…a group of teenagers came out to sit on a picnic table and I told them they needed to go back to their classroom since it still was Homework hour and they gave me some snotty remarks and then turned around. Few minutes later they come back out and say another teacher said it was ok to come out. Smack right on my face, I try to enforce rules that the club has and I am side swiped by another adult. It’s so frustrating to be not liked and to be treated badly. I am giving my time for free for these kids and I get nothing in return except evil looks and mockery. The teenagers than continued to be noisy and were laughing at me while I tried to keep the handful of younger kids under control. That was when all the crayon madness started and I was ready to give up. Everything was falling apart, except one boy who usually is naughty was being so nice and that encouraged me a bit.

Earlier one little girl made a comment that this was my part time job. I explained to her that I don’t get paid to be there; I actually just volunteer because of I love them. She exclaimed, “That’s impossible”, several times. Another girl said, “But Miss Sarah you have to have a job for money, it’s impossible”. I told them God said to come and take care of the kids and I listened.

Now I feel like it is all for nothing…what a waste of my time to keep giving to these kids when the staff members there don’t back me up.

My jeep was fixed yesterday but now the check engine light is on so it appears I have to bring it back tomorrow. Either way I at least could drive myself back home after my terrible experience with the kids today.
I flipped open my bible with tears in my eyes to try and see what to do and I saw this:

Blessed are you who hunger now, For you will be satisfied

Blessed are you who weep now, For you will laugh

Blessed are you when people hate you

When they exclude you and insult you

And reject your name as evil

Because of the Son of Man

Luke 6:21-22

I have a choice.. I can either swallow my Pride and go back tomorrow and take the verbal abuse for the younger kids. Or I can choose to give up. Is little Happy Feet, J’noy, Davi, Angel, Samaje, and Dilani worth it?

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Healing Eyes

Presented with a challenge

Since the Lighthouse after school program unexpectedly closed down for a week I can now devote more energy at the other club and God put some inspiration into my heart at around 2am on Thursday. Filled with excitement by the time 7am rolled around I had a plan, 5 devotional type crafts for 5 days at the boys and girls club.

Thursday : Honor your Parents
Friday: Tell the Truth
Monday: Forgiveness
Tuesday: Decisions
Wednesday: Sheep

Then have the kids present each craft every day and share what they learned. One boy was scared to be on stage but I told him I also fear public speaking and if I can do it he can too. He fell on his butt from running up the stair and all the kids laughed but he survived and even said a word or two. When we worked on the second craft today he just kept talking about how scared he was but he said it all with a smile on his face.  I suppose as frustrating as it is with all the screaming and chaos of lack of rules at the club it’s worth it for 20 minutes of one on one time with some kids craving attention. If I can keep tackling a small group at a time than perhaps something will rub off on the kids.

Little J’noy worries me, he has taken to being depressed much more and I tried to ask him why but he just won’t say. It was nice to see him perk up a bit on the stage when he showed his craft, I think maybe he smiled. (he’s on the left in both photos.

 

Healing Eyes

Kids are teaching me about love

“Sing, barren woman, you who never bore a child, burst into song, shout for joy. You who never were in labor, because more are the children of the desolate woman than of her who has a husband.” Isaiah 54

Your tent will open wide and the children will love you. Even as yesterday when Carla asked why all the kids love me. Shout for joy, you who never bore a child, because more are the children of a desolate woman than of her who has a husband. How beautiful to see the meaning behind those words after years upon years of them sitting in a little book waiting for one day to be read.

Burst into song – remember no more the reproach of your widowhood! Love the children beyond what you have known in the past. For the past is just that.

Give song to me again…even if it is all a mystery as to why things happen as they did. Why so many years of being childless…so that I could live now for each child needing love amidst their suffering.

Bring it on!

Healing Eyes

Simple blessings amidst suffering

Life teaches us more than what we find in textbooks. Our greatest teacher of obedience is through suffering. From great loss, such as death of a loved one, to our daily failures we suffer over and over. Each time we learn something new about ourselves and how we react will be a witness to others.

I have no jeep. On an island that means I have to wait for the new radiator to be shipped over and then hope the post office will release them in a timely manner. There is no loaner car from the local dealer. There is only waiting. Waiting on the kindness of others and waiting on the mechanic. Good news I have raised $325 towards my new radiator, half way there.

This has forced me to again be still and have patience. Lots of time to read and listen…be guided to act and to wait on things. This experience again reminds me that I am not in control. I am at the whim of my invisible friend. Yesterday at the club I felt so small and useless with the kids yelling and not being able to reach each kid to help with homework. Little J’noy speaks so softly and is trying so hard to be noticed but the other kids over power him. J’shaun (I call him ‘J’) is my smart kid. I saw him working on his homework while the other kids were running around like monkeys. We sat down at a picnic table and worked through his alphabetizing and math (of which my math sucks). He wanted to get the homework down before power hour I think because it’s so loud during that hour of homework time that he can’t think. I don’t blame him, its pretty impossible to really get anything done during that time. Later I had J’shaun help with the other kids by pointing to the misbehaving ones and he would tell that kid to come over to me. He’s really a great helper. It’s shocking that during summer camp he was actually loud and misbehaving but now he is polite and kind.

Little happy feet got a big hug from me before I left, I picked her up and swung her around. She said she loved me and I said I would be back on Friday. ‘See you on Friday she yelled’.

Almost forgot the cutest part of the day. I shared photos of my day at the beach with Olaf the snowman from the movie Frozen. The kids found that quite humorous that I made Olaf’s dream come true.

I dare say I am in danger of falling in love with all these kids.

Healing Eyes

Ah crap…not my Jeep!!!

2pm and it’s time to volunteer at the Boys and Girls club…so…I get in my Jeep and head out… but wait…something bad is about to happen eek!

After driving down the road the Jeep started to make a noise!

While turning around to bring the Jeep to the mechanic I stalled at a red light and begged for the jeep to start.. it did.. but … then a few miles down it stalled while going down a hill. The brakes got soft and I had to use the handbrake to come to a stop on the side of the road next to some guys cleaning cars.

Hand Smack!!!

Smoke coming out of the engine and a clanging sound. One of the guys comes up and we talk, I was only a mile away from the mechanic and thankfully the guy offered to pull me with a rope. Another guy volunteered to steer and I went along for the ride.

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My Jeep was coasting down the hill and I was led, quite literally, to two guys named, Jesus and Jacob who pulled me to the mechanic with a tattered piece of string. Nice guys at least, they also do mechanic work so maybe they’ll be cheaper if the engine is savable. I decided to hug Jesus, I mean why not he saved me $75 for a tow truck (he kissed me on the cheek, he didn’t speak much english). I told them my name, Sarah, and they laughed, another biblical name from the bible. At least I can laugh about the fact that now I have no car.

I was going to say Pray it was seized up but I just got a call. Its the radiator and all the hoses and whistles to go with it. So now I am out $610 to fix it.

Would it be bad to put the donate button on this post for anyone that wants to help an island gal out who just wants to help the kids since God said to sell everything and move to an island to mentor to kids ?  I could really use a miracle right about now 🙁

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Healing Eyes

Answering the call again

After much back and forth on prayer with God and perhaps some stubbornness. I have taken the next leap of faith in what he is asking me to do. First though yesterday I heard a bible story about Gideon and him asking God to give him a sign..something about making the morning dew not appear on a wool fleece and that would be a sign that the request was from God. Then he didn’t believe it when God did it and he said alright make everything else dry and just the wool fleece damp. So it took a couple tries for Gideon to believe what God was telling him to do.

I haven’t been laying a wool fleece outside my door (although I wonder if that would work in modern days hmm) but I have been putting off what God said to do and asking for signs. This morning I sat down on my porch and prayed that if he wanted me to pull the trigger and dish out the money to start the paperwork for forming a business and the non profit status that he would make it clear to me right away to do it. So then as I’m sitting outside I get a call from the ‘legal people’ wanting to answer all my questions I was procrastinating on. In my mind I still think this is a ludicrous plan and seriously impossible to accomplish, I mean the logistics are maddening on how to pull this off, and the fees are large. But I can’t refuse a blatant phone call after praying about what to do….so there you have it. I pushed the button and awaiting to hear if the business name “Healing Eyes, Inc.” is approved and then await the IRS to approve my tax exempt request which will take months I’m told.

Why the name, Healing Eyes? Well…

“Healing eyes comes from what we cannot see. Most often through life we can allow pain to imprison our minds and guide us numbly through life. God promises to be our light in times of trouble and our loving Shepard if only we surrender what is precious to us. Pain can cause blindness but it also can be a gift from God if we hand it over… Let go to breathe.”

“Through brokenness is pain. After the blindness of pain is lifted we can see with new eyes. Without loss it’s harder to truly know joy.”

“I reached the end of self by losing everything! Being set free at last!”

 

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Healing Eyes

Traveling Pink Ukulele spotted by the kids

First day bringing the traveling Pink Uke to the Lighthouse…again it seems the kids love it. How can something so small get so much attention… I suppose similar to how ‘Little Genesis’ gets so much looks. It’s true that great things come in little packages.

The little girl named Genesis is new this year to the program. Yes she is as tiny as she seems and if you call her ‘Little’ she says, “No I’m a big lady”. So cute.

Kids Concert Series 🙂

Healing Eyes

How to keep going…

The Kids

Another month almost done and once again I wonder how long I am supposed to be on this island and doing what I am doing. It is really hard seeing how it will work when I am paying my bills with faith. I can’t let myself be led by money…I did that before in old job. This time I want to be led by my heart. The boys and girls club today was challenging as always and very hot. The structure is still very chaotic there and most of the time the kids are in charge. I wasn’t feeling very well but I dragged myself in and come homework time I pulled up a chair and just sat in the middle of the room. Different tactic this time a passive aggressive (mainly out of the fact I was hurting and needed to sit down) teaching style might work. At first it appeared to work, I sat in the chair and did the clapping technique to get the kids to repeat the pattern I clapped which then got there mouths to shut. The kids would come to me for help so I could not get up and down. In theory it worked but after awhile with all the other older kids coming in and out of the room it fell apart. On the upside one of the parents came in and told his kid to listen to me, that was a great feeling to see my efforts did matter. The dad said to let him know whenever his son misbehaved.

It all feels hopeless by the end of the day. The kids have incomplete sentences, spelling, math issues, and A.D.D. on self inflicted sugar comas. One little girl I think is dyslexic and she’s a sweety but then her mother called afterwards and yelled at the director since she said we didn’t help her child with homework. Sigh…endless battles it seems are to come.

It’s hard only being at that club 2 days a week since the rules I enforce aren’t consistent with other when I am not there so the kids are confused and the staff are frustrated. Sadly, I am so little amongst all those kids and I look like a pushover. Which I don’t quite get since I think I am putting a pretty serious face on. Strangely even though this club is so stressful I love it there more than Lighthouse. Perhaps its the challenge I get from the chaos or that some of the kids I have gotten to love from summer camp.

There was one boy who used to be well behaved but sadly I think he is trying out the ‘misbehaving’ method to get attention. I had to suspend him from the computer lab for the week for playing games. All those kids know the rules but they push it…funny enough when they see me in the lab they know they shouldn’t play games and vacate fast. I asked the boy later that afternoon why he was misbehaving when he used to be so good, I told him it made me sad to see him try and get attention that way and that he shouldn’t reach to those methods to get attention. I even tried telling him he’s a good boy and I don’t like punishing him when I know he better than that.


 

Showtime back in Michigan .. Watch

This Sunday I was blessed to have my story shared at a church in Michigan, a friend took some photos while in the congregation. Who knows what is next but I will have faith somehow I’ll eat each day and have a roof over my head. It takes time to grow.

Biggest needs are prayer for perseverance, and networking with churches to raise support to walk along with these children.

 

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Healing Eyes