• sarah@healingeyes.org

Tag Archives: africa

A Joyous Day felt around the world

Yesterday I was able to send some money to Uganda to help pay for a very dear friend’s schooling and hopefully it arrives safely to the school account. There is something joyous about calling the brother and telling him the money is on the way. It seems the school had kicked little Billah out again and they were able to convince them to let her stay a bit longer. So I think the timing of this is all perfectly aligned with keeping her in school.

This is all so scary and exciting at the same time as I have no idea how to keep the money flowing in this ministry but it seems to be working for now and in the process making people happy.

I feel like this blog post isn’t well written ha as to me being OVERFLOWING with joy from talking to my friends in Uganda! Perhaps we might have even prevented a little girl from being evicted from school!

Prayers needed big time to ensure the money makes it by the end of the week to the school and the account number I have is correct, that no one cheats healing eyes, and that the school deducts the money from her past fees. Pray for Billah and her safety and her entire family to find some peace amidst there days. Pray for Billah’s brother who has a kind heart and is himself struggling to get back into the university to become a surgeon.

Can October come any sooner?! I am anxious to return to the waterfall and live a life I was intended for even though it is the hardest kind of life imaginable. Through great struggle comes the most rewarding pay offs though.

If you ever thought of sponsoring a child in need I can really understand how it may not seem rewarding when you don’t have the close relationship gained by direct contact with the family. But I can tell you this, either way it is all about helping a child feel God’s loving arms and not about how we feel by helping. The boost of adrenaline in joy is a nice perk to helping though:) If only I could transfer that feeling to all of you more directly ha!

Thank you to everyone for reading and praying and supporting…just big hugs for everyone and let the Big Hen be slaughtered tonight for the joyous celebration over building relationships abroad!! (yes a slaughtered chicken analogy, my dear little friend wrote that in a letter to me, she is only 9 years old but in Africa it is a great thing to offer an abundant meal to visitors in joy of receiving them)

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Healing Eyes

Can coincidences lead to truth..the story continues

The continuation of the story which might just convince you that unseen faith can lead to the seen.

An unexpected adventure of a magnificent kind occurred on a sunny day in Africa in the month of June. A young widow came to Africa to see where she belonged and how she could help, and perhaps quiet the voices inside her head.

At the waterfall she met a little girl named Billah and this led her to return again and again. It was on this day that her traveling companion suggested an expedition of a unlikely sort to find a man neither of them knew. She explained he was a man who was helping orphans. They were struggling to provide education, food, and shelter for the children. After finding out that the young widow came to do just that, help orphans and widows she thought instantly of this man with a giant heart. It was only a few weeks before that she was told by her preacher about this man and his project of orphans.

With God’s help the young widow had followed his voice to come to Africa. She could not see why or how but perhaps this might be what he had prepared her for over the past year of searching and hoping.

The two travelers set out very early on this adventure by starting on foot from the mystical waterfall. As they walked many children greeted them from the village. Some ways down the road they found a motorbike and asked for a ride. After the motorbike they found a taxi full of people and stuffed themselves into the backseat. The road was bumpy and jostled them to and fro.

Finally, they arrived at the city and set out on foot to find yet another taxi overflowing with people going in the direction they wanted to go. It would drop them off at a small shack on the side of the road and sign marked Magodesi where they would then meet the man with the giant heart. But it began to rain and the ladies because discouraged as it was getting late and the man they met put some doubt in the young widow’s heart. The young widow prayed for strength and perhaps an excuse to run away. Instead they found a motorbike and went farther down the road with the man, far into the bush.

Finally, far into the bush and down a windy dirt road they came to a school. Screaming kids greeted them with Joy.

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The lady was scared and tired, she feared the unknown but she had to keep going. Her heart lifted at the sight of the orphans so happy to see her. The school was very modest and small, the flies swarmed all around her head. The faces of children peered at her white skin and they giggled with glee. Each child had a story and you could see the pain in there eyes. There life was hard from birth and they felt very lonely. The sight of these happy kids in such a poor school pulled at the young lady’s heart. Was this why she came?

As she talked to the man she learned many things. His church helped the school and was also next to the school. It was made up of several woman who were widowed from the HIV disease. When the young lady heard there were 185 orphans and they were being supported by a congregation of mainly widows she chuckled to herself. Not because it was funny but because it was exactly what God had said to her over the past year to look for. He had nicely packaged it into one little spot.

But she was still skeptical..

There was one girl named Esther who had led the man to start the school because of her humped back and long arms. She had tried other schools but sadly the other kids made fun of her because of the hump on her back. She could not stay at those schools and she had no where else to go. So he started a school 2 years ago, it is near Kenya and a beautiful low valley in Uganda. It has handmade chalkboards and a few long wooden benches. The children will kneel in the mud to write on them. Some of the kids are taught under a tree for shelter, while others sit under a make-shift shelter of sticks. The name of the school has the word ‘vision‘ in it. The young lady chuckled again at this ‘coincidence’ as she new Healing Eyes may seem similar. She also realized the man had white eyes and vision problems, perhaps he needed some ‘healing‘ for his eyes.

As she left that school and travelled back to the waterfall she couldn’t help but think of all the ‘coincidences‘ that she were shown to her. Orphans supported by widowssign, many aren’t even the mothers of the children. God had told her she was to help neglected children and have widows help too. But what could one little Widow do for strangers in a foreign land? Then she saw a sign post with words written on it and an arrow, “Healing Ministries“, and it pointed down the road she just came from.

Why would God waste his time on a skeptical young widow such as her? But the words were so obvious, she could not deny the coincidences that lay before her!

Or could she just write it all off as convenient coincidences?

What do you think? Does God exist? Does he still talk to people and does he use such blatant signs to do so?

Well….there is yet more to the story..but yes, that will be another day when I share that and perhaps what ‘Project 616’ is..

Healing Eyes

A ride into the night sky as it welcomed home a friend

When miracles continue to happen.. a story for you that leads to another blessing..

One sunny afternoon many weeks later the young lady set out on an adventure once more to the beautiful waterfall. Along the way she rode in several taxis so full of people she could hardly move. She carried with her a musical instrument that made the man at the border crossing laugh and smile. He asked her to play a tune for him, it was quite funny to see a ukulele being strummed by so many staring eyes on the border of two lands.

Once she had crossed the border into Uganda she met a man to take her the rest of the way. His name was Qasher, which meant, “the one you were waiting for”. Quite funny the coincidence she thought because she had been waiting for him even though she did not know him before this day. The roads were bumpy and rough but the lady’s heart lifted along the way since soon she would arrive at the waterfall. This lady loved water and especially waterfalls. They always calmed her and made her feel at peace.

While the two were traveling along she found out he was a muslim and she herself was a christian. This did not bother the pair of travelers. They actually talked at great length about how we are all people and sometimes some people are just bad while most are good. He shared about his family and the triplets that were just born. He offered her one of them since she had no children of her own, they both laughed.

The young lady looked up a the night sky and a great smile came upon her face. She loved stars you see and back home she saw so few at night because of the city lights. When she arrived to a spot in the road where she was to meet another stranger it was very very dark. She greeted the dark man and off they went on a motorbike, through the pitch black darkness and muddy, rocky roads. The stars shone so brightly that night and her new companion said they had been waiting for her, the stars that is.

At last she heard the waterfall crashing on the rocks and saw a dim light above a small building in the distance. There were voices welcoming her. It was as if she had been carried by angels from the border and they so gently whispered to her, ‘it will be alright, rest easy in our arms as we guide you through the dark and perilous night’.

Then a small girl rushed into the lady’s arms once again and she knew exactly who the frail little girl was. She exclaimed happily to the girl and hugged her so tight that they both might have been truly the most blessed and happy people in the entire world. On that very dark and silent night with the crescent moon shining above and every star out to welcome the pair back to each other.

The adventure continued the next day but perhaps that is for another day because this story will be the most astounding tale ever that perhaps you might shrug off as coincidental or NOT..

to be continued..

Can a heart love so much it explodes? I am so blessed to have met this girl

Can a heart love so much it explodes? I am so blessed to have met this girl

Healing Eyes

A story about a miracle – part 1

We found a place in Uganda that is struggling to support 185 orphans and so I was led there through some interesting ‘coincidences’. Let me begin by telling a little story about a little girl.

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There once was a young lady who met a small, quiet girl by a huge waterfall. The lady grew to love the small girl and was very sad to leave one day. However, the lady knew she would see her again.

One rainy day in May the lady found a way to visit the girl but sadly only for a brief moment. She had a friend drive her all the way from Kenya to Uganda, it took 6 hours on very bad roads! The journey was very strange for the young lady because she had never crossed the border in Africa and she was very scared. There were bad men who tried to con her out of money. Luckily God stepped in and found a taxi to drive her and her friends all the way to the waterfall. But her luck still was bad it seemed because she got lost on the way. Many villagers along the way tried to give directions until finally they found the road. Again God led the way to the waterfall. But wait! It started to rain and the car had trouble getting down the muddy road. So the young lady got out and ran through the rain and mud. Sadly, when she arrived the little girl was not there. This made the young lady very sad and a tear fell from her eyes and down her cheek. God sent an angel to watch over the young lady and the angel saw her tears. It then began to rain even harder as if the world felt her pain. The roads became even muddier and muddier and the journey back would be even more treacherous. The young lady begged her friends to spend the night and wait til morning to see the little girl. But they said no.

When she got back to the car and sat down her clothes were soaked and muddy. She choked back the tears. She asked for a miracle to happen to stay longer. The angel from God heard this cry and amazingly the car would NOT start! The driver was confused and angry but the car refused to start. The young lady secretly smiled over this unfortunate event.

Just then the rain stopped too! The sun came out and she felt so loved by God. All of a sudden several small kids appeared at the lady’s feet and she searched for the one special girl. But she was not there. As she waited she giggled and smiled at the small children gathering. Off in the distance she saw more people and heard voices. What could it be? As she squinted she saw a little girl dressed in blue running down the hill. Could it be?! Yes! It was her! As she got closer she spread out her arms and scooped the little girl up into her arms and cried with joy. God had made it rain for the first time in weeks and broke the car so that the little girl would make it in time.

Do miracles exist today?

 


 

If you want to donate $5 to help sponsor Billah’s education for a year please Pray and Partner with us today.

 

Donate Button with Credit CardsHealing Eyes, Inc. is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization based in Western Michigan. If you would like to partner with Healing Eyes on a one time or monthly basis, please make your checks payable to Healing Eyes, Inc. and mail them to 4160 Blue Heron Dr SE, Apt 302, Kentwood, MI 49512. 

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Healing Eyes

Kids are everywhere in the world..Near and Far

How too spread yourself all over the world in search of helping others. 

  • First you need to find an island to keep going back to.
  • Second you need to go a bit farther and find a third world country to embed yourself into.
  • Then you need to just flop between those while maintaining a little stable place in the states.

Does that make sense? Or is it beyond normal way of living? I’m starting to think maybe it’s a bit over the top but then again isn’t God over the top in his demands? I don’t want to try and use God as the scapegoat here on why I travel so much but it really feels like I have a draw to both lands. It’s those kids! Those endearing and precious kids that pull at the soft part of my heart I thought long dead since losing my baby. Never in my life did I think I could like kids or even want to be around them. Is it ironic my name is ‘Sarah’ and that in Africa they kept asking ‘Where is your husband, Abraham?’

Did Sarah in the bible ever think it possible to have a kid so late in age when an angel said she was gonna get knocked up? I think she probably thought that was a bit insane and didn’t make sense. Just a hunch.

Now today a year and half after Andy died I have kids in 2 areas of the world. Soon I might have hundred of kids who know who I am and I get attached to. Whatever will I do if I get attached to 185 orphans in Uganda?! And me Teach!? Really?

Can God really be doing this and truly that ironic to bless another ‘Sarah’ with children? Sing barren woman, she who never bore a child, more are the children of the desolate woman than of her who has a husband….   Really? Perhaps I am overthinking it and over-blogging but sometimes there is just too much coincidences to deny it all.

Healing Eyes is returning to Uganda in Sept 28 – October 27th Officially! This time it’s a mission with a simple purpose..to build a relationship with a man struggling to fulfill his dream to provide education for 185 orphans and disabled kids in a school made up of a tree, sticks, and some mud. We want to see how we can help him reach his goal to help others. We would love to have others partner with us in prayer and listen to what God lays on your heart. My heart has reached it’s limit for now and its maxed out on love for the day…

Healing Eyes

A sweet girl named Karen

karenKaren was a girl with over the top excitement. Each day I would hear her scream out my name with a little trill in her voice. Sarah!!!!!! There was one day where she pulled me aside and got very quiet, it was the day after I wrote her a little letter to encourage her. She told me the letter brought her joy and it seemed she wanted to open up about something but couldn’t.
We sat alone for awhile and giggled softly about silly things.

She said in a letter to me that her mother wasn’t very nice to her and it’s hard on her. I told karen she should still love her mother even if she is mean to her because perhaps she is just upset at life in general and not at her daughter.
I don’t know what life is really like for her at home but I do know she was the sweetest girl I met.
A bit bossy but aren’t all sweet girls a bit demanding ha

Healing Eyes

A sweeter tasting truth than what you can buy here

Look at a banana…is it yellow and curved? Does it not look the same as a banana you could find anywhere in the world? Once you look inside it also looks exactly the same as a banana here or there…HOWEVER…something is different once you taste it. One is sweeter than the other, one is closer to the origin than the other, and one is living in conditions entirely different than the now transplanted piece of fruit.

Now look at a Faith lived out in Michigan and Faith lived in Africa. When you first arrive at the airport in a foreign country it will look the same as anywhere else. Does it not have signs and lights just like anywhere in the world? Once you look inside it has chairs and people running to destinations just like any airport here or there…HOWEVER…something is different once you TASTE it.

Stepping outside you will see odd people and odd smells, cars on the wrong side of the road, farther out you will see odd trees and strange surroundings. Go farther and start living as they live and that is where you will finally see how Faith lived here is vastly different than faith lived in Michigan. Often faith in the States is superficial and not tested. How can I say that? Because my faith here is weak, no sooner do I return than I already doubt everything and want to give up. I can flip a switch and have reliable power, turn the faucet and water comes out that I can drink! No bugs on the floor, risk of ring worm is low, and I have a car with roads that actually can take me somewhere I mean to go. There are jobs that will pay money regularly, and supermarkets that have what I want when I go inside them. How can I have faith in the invisible when I can easily obtain what I see right now!

Why should I chose one life over the other? This one seems more alluring and comfortable, many people can live like this and its perfectly fine, we have to have people living like this in order to help others not living like this. So I have a legitimate case as to why it would be ok to get a job in the normal sense and live comfortably.

I tasted radical faith. I tasted a Sweeter faith just like that oh so fresh banana that melts in your mouth. I just ate a banana here and it is bland and boring. I lived for 6 weeks in a 3rd world country and was miserable most of the time, if I re-read my journal I am complaining and asking to die more often than I am exclaiming happiness, joy, and warm fuzzy rainbowness. I do remember talking on the phone one day exclaiming I am not coming back, I have found my place and its perfect, you’ll have to come here to see me again. Then the very next day I was screaming to come home and was tired of no hot shower and lack of control over my own whereabouts. It was that ONE DAY where I tasted the sweetest poison and I can’t shake it. Borne out of suffering and perseverance to get there and I found what I was looking for there…but then I had to say good bye to it. Each day in Kenya I had barely any control over what I was doing and rarely did any tutoring like I thought I would in the schools. Often the days would be just staring at a wall for hours and occasionally being in a classroom. I learned patient endurance and faith that what I sought was going to appear. I saw why I was in St. Croix for a year and the patience I learned there was extremely helpful in preparing me for this. Tricks I picked up in my boredom there was used to keep me at peace numerous times in kenya. It has all been preparation for the next thing so that it was more of a gradual removal of familiarity and comfort so not to shock me to death. God doesn’t ask us to shock ourselves to death by submission but instead he asks to just let go little by little until you have nothing left to cling to and can be like that sweet banana growing closer to the vine and picked at just the right time for harvest.

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Healing Eyes

Rafiki Yangu forever and ever

When we first met I saw a leader in the making…a young lady that possessed a strength only born out of suffering. She shouldn’t be pitied or even looked at as a victim. NO! She is someone who at first introduction would make you think…what was her life like that made her have such strong and imposing eyes. As we got closer with each visit I saw her eyes soften and the beautiful woman emerged from within. How can two different personalities connect so easily? Maybe it was that similar attribute of pain buried within that sparked a connection. As we talked more through ‘passing notes’ to each other I learned more about her life and she in turn gave me so many inspiring words. She is still in high school but I could have sworn she was a girl full of years no child should ever have to earn.

“Look at the birds of the air. They sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly father feeds them. Are you not more value than they. Believe in God he will help you in ways of difficulties that you are passing through he will make it be lite.”

“If you have desired to follow Jesus NO Turning back anymore… You were chosen to be my friend forever and ever even if it is in difficulties or in every thing that God made for us.”

If I can somehow share stories of hope and love as I journey through life and also maintain a living by going where God sends me than I will. To make friends like my sweet Josephine forever and ever because God put her in that location at that time to catch my eye to encourage me more than I ever encouraged her than so be it. Can’t life be that simple? To hear the birds in the trees and see the children in pain and know I am in that place I should be…just in time to share words with someone in need. A young lady who is living alone on a mountain, far away, going to school each day to someday be a policewoman. She has no family capable to show her the love and attention kids her age crave but what does she do…SHE LIVES!

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Healing Eyes

Time in a bubble

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The world moves so slowly now and all I see are manicured lawns and greens and yellows everywhere. Time stood still while I was gone and all that I left behind still sits neatly in its place. The home I once knew still is gone and the soulmate I once held in my arms is still at rest. Yet….I am not at rest. I see the birds playing in the trees outside my window and I think..I feel as if this world is not for me anymore. Try as I may and as much as I want it to be I still can’t find him in it….he is gone…and I remain.

Again I learned to slow down in Africa. Again I learned to not be in control in Africa. Again I saw many eyes staring at me as a stranger in their land. They graced me with there concept of time and now back in the States I must adapt back to this concept of time. A world where time means everything and cramming as much into ONE day is crucial if not vital to existing in it.

Back in Africa I left a young girl behind in a boarding school. She has a small little bunk bed and a little elephant to hug at night, but I felt such sadness leaving her behind again. She is not my daughter, I shall never have one of those. She is not family in the normal sense, She is thousands of miles away tucked away in a little mountain village hopefully not turned away by lack of funds.

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Back in Africa there is a young lady with such strength children her age in America should learn from. She lives alone, abandoned and forgotten to many, yet she smiles and keeps on living. Many other young ladies with no one to care for them keep walking up that mountain to go to school not every knowing what impact they have on those they meet. I shared time with them…time in a bubble….

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My luggage is all unpacked and I am doing laundry with such luxury, a Washing Machine. I had a can of Condensed Chicken Noodle Soup and was mesmerized by the simplicity of making it. The few bits of food in my cabinet that I have to eat..I wonder how I’ll keep eating each day. I wonder what tomorrow will bring. I wonder so many things.

I am spoiled, I am fortunate, I am alone, but I think I won’t call myself a Widow anymore. Instead my new name will just be Miss Sarah the fortunate to have met so many hearts in Africa that showed me what’s important.

Healing Eyes

Random filled day

Trying to make sense of my day and it’s not really coming together in my head. I decided to visit the school that I call “evil”, since I hadn’t been there all week. So I prayed and read the bible for some strength to face the school. I got on the piki piki and made the trip over. When I got there the school was not open. The kids were off until Monday. Great! So now what?

Well I saw the little kids at primary school in the school yard next door. So i decided to just go over there. I said bye to the piki piki guy and walked over…past two cows. 

Eventually the kids saw me walking over and came running over. The circled me like before. Than we sang and goofed around with the ukulele. I then thought maybe I should introduce myself to the principal and has the kids lead me. I found an adult and asked what can I do to help. He just said, “well you are already playing with the little ones so keep entertaining them”.  

So ok…again I randomly show up at this school and just make it up as I go. We went to the field and I remembered I had construction paper in my bag so I figured let’s make birds and giraffes out of origami. I sit down which then makes the kids come closer and crushed each other. About 50 kids I think and I’m squeezed in the middle of the cluster. I just decided to go with it and made a bird out of paper. I had the kids answer a question in order to get the bird. One girl raised her hand and answered it correctly when I asked Where was Jesus born, so she got the bird. I had to scream over there voices but it was working. So I made a giraffe and asked Who was Jesus’s mother. Another kid answered and got it right. Since many kids were getting crushed I stood up and tried to form a circle. By now more kids showed up and circle was huge. The kids sang and clapped songs. I taught them one new song, “my God is so big”.

Then I remembered I had a fairy tale book in my bag and so I tried having them read out loud. Many were too shy but some took the bait. 

The bell rang and classes started so I followed my gang of kids and settled on a room with about 20 kids. Sat down and waited for a teacher. No one showed. Sooooo I guess I’ll teach English and grabbed a book and started going over past tense words. This was kind of like last time I showed up and taught impromptu. No adults greeted me or stopped, one guy watched a bit and the kids were very quiet then. He waved me to continue. 

Eventually it was lunch time so I followed the kids outside. They were walking home to eat. So I ended up sitting by the road and waited for a ride back. A bunch of kids kept me company and I sang for them. Thank goodness for my ukulele!!

My ride showed up and I found out they were going to run errands and visit the doctor soooo I didn’t want to do that. The next town I found a taxi and crammed in (I knocked my head hard on the door frame) and my butt was kind of tilted up against the metal side and a bar dug into my hip. But it was cheap transport ! Then I got to town and had a piki piki take me home. 

I couldn’t have planned this day. But it was fun with the small kids and teaching English. Yet again I don’t know how I was bold enough to take over a class and sing in a field. But that’s what happened! There was a small girl crying at one point so I hugged her and I hope that was my purpose for being there at that unexpected moment. Another girl’s shoe was untied and I tied it, I think she was shocked and scared of me. 

I hope Billah is getting love back in Uganda. I wish I could be with her now encouraging her…maybe a random mazungoo will visit her school like me and hug her for me. 

Healing Eyes