• sarah@healingeyes.org

Tag Archives: orphans

Why should you care?

Scared to Death…Saturday is FASTLY approaching and somehow I have to show up confident and NOT a basket case to talk for 10 minutes in front of who knows how many people.

What am I talking about?

The WHOA Benefit Concert is THIS Saturday at 6pm at Family of Christ Church. Two amazing local bands are playing and one of them has taken over the entire planning…THANKFULLY! What do I have left to do but PRAY and pull my photos together in order for God to touch hearts in 10 minutes of me babbling on about Africa.

Why should you care?

Don’t…there are tons of other organizations doing huger relief efforts than me and they are experienced in doing it. A sure thing investing money in them. BUT what if we aren’t investing MONEY into Africa but instead we seek to invest in COMPASSION and LOVE? Could that me the niche for Healing Eyes that is sorely needed? To NOT throw material things at a problem but instead throw God, Love, and Compassion to those in need? It’s not physically tangible at FIRST but if you could see the smiles and the ripple effect of unselfish love given in order to just Build a Relationship. Later on the buildings and supplies can come but in truth we first need to just add that ‘flavor’ to the world and see how God can twist it into HIS plan. If that plan means buildings and supplies down the road than great…let HIM do it and not US.

All God wants is willing participants in HIS Plan and If Healing Eyes and little Sarah can be a partner to his plan and see what happens that HOW awesome would it be to connect more people in the GRAND scheme of HIS.

Join us This Saturday for MUSIC and fun. Should be some pizza slices to purchase and of course you get to hear a bit more about what Healing Eyes is up to with Project 616

Healing Eyes

The lie of the ‘phase’ argument

I have often wondered if this time of my life is a ‘phase’ or a ‘season’. Often strangers and friends have said to me that perhaps it’s just a phase I have to go through and then things will go back to how they were. It’s all fine and dandy to have such a spiritual high in life and then return to what is normal. I’m re-reading the Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis and have run across a passage in it that illustrates such a quandary I find myself in repeatedly.

“A direct attack on his faith..persuading him that ‘his religious phase ‘ is just going to die away like all his previous phases? The mere word ‘phase’ will likely do the trick. You keep him well fed on hazy ideas of Progress and Development and the Historical Point of View, I trust, and give him lots of modern biographies to read? The people in them are always emerging from Phases, aren’t they?”

There was one distinct time I remember while in Africa and after I just found the school near the border of Kenya and Uganda. I had just spend about 4 weeks in Kenya and not all of it was a blessing like most think will happen when serving God. Often we never see the blessings that come from our labor but we have faith some good will come out of our strife. My health was poor and my spirits were low but I was hopeful God would still follow through on his promise to show me the widows and orphans he kept speaking of to me. It was an amazing story of how I found the school and if you care to read it again you can follow this link, Coincidences lead to truth.

But it was that very night after being blessed by God that the devil or evil one, however you want to label that unnerving feeling, decided to slither on it and put doubts in my head. He used some other foreigners visiting the area to put the word ‘phase’ into my heart. One lady said to me, ‘maybe it’s all a phase in your life and you can go back to graphic design, but it’s great your doing what your doing’. Just like that the familiar doubt creeped back in and I went to bed crying and with a tight chest full of doubt and fear.

Maybe I am crazy!

Maybe I did go too far in all this hope and faith crap and now I am stuck in the middle of Africa with no one to bail me out. Literally alone in a jungle sleeping in a tent with the realization of how stupid all of this was. Since something like this happened before I tried to repeat words in my head, ‘No it isn’t a phase and that I experienced too many coincidences to not see them as miracles and guidance from God’. I like proof and God did give me proof that day and so I pushed back the evil thoughts of doubt and phases to eventually fall asleep in the pitch-black darkness of the night.

You see it’s right when we learn something new or get closer to affirmation that God exists and that our purpose in life is simple. The evil will creep in and stomp on those hopes the instant we find answers to that small voice in our hearts. In Africa it is a full frontal attack on people because they don’t have all the comforts of modern civilization to lull them into a ‘normal’ life of ease. I never want to return to thinking that ‘religion is all very well up to a point’. Neither do I want to fall into the habit of thinking my religion is better than other religions when life comes down to Love and Compassion! Not taking what is given to us at face value in the bible and questioning it all and reading it and willingly asking God to explain it to me with any method he chooses. If it’s by throwing me in a third world country with only faith than I’ll do it because that is living…that is truly seeing faith in action…and it is about bring ‘flavor’ to the world we live in and not mediocrity. Likewise God can use people in modern life to make a difference in those around them even if its by living vicariously through those God says, ‘Go’, to.

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Healing Eyes

Can you help make this all happen?

This is insane and beyond possible. But I believe it IS POSSIBLE! When was the last time you BELIEVED in something when no one else did? When did you wave your hands in the air and beg for others to be excited like you? When did you see a vision and no on else did until it was proven to be possible?

When did you have to do something uncomfortable but found the strength to pull it off?

Now I like facts and sound instant gratification with proven results. Holding a benefit concert with unknown possibilities should be nerve racking BUT I know it’s going to work out because it already is. What?

I have a venue and I have a team of volunteers ready to pull it off. Need more proof that this is more than a whim and a lame fundraiser? Ok! I’ve collected several silent auction items all by walking into businesses and asking even though it made me extremely uncomfortable and scared. Sometimes we have to STEP out on a ledge and jump to see what happens…and Sometimes when we do it may just surprise us all.

So! Keep on believing and Keep on dreaming because I’ve seen it happen too many times where things just FALL into place. Although everything around us may crumble and life gets smashed on the rocks by the waves of grief and loss we still can find those calm moments where a bit of Hope shines through.

Why does this Whoa Benefit Concert matter? Because we all need to show support when others are beaten down and cast aside and because it’s time to Support Healing Eyes and move this Project 6’16 forward in a BIG way. So come on out September 19th and experience a MIRACLE and hear some good music. You may even catch a bit of the PASSION behind this mission of a little widow and some little orphans far far away.

The cover charge is a DONATION of $8-$10 and we do hope you can help change some lives by participating in the launch of Project 6’16!

Healing Eyes

Feeling judged by others

When you make the decision to go to church there are a lot of things that deter you from following through. I don’t know about you but I know I couldn’t stand going to church for many many years when I was married. Few factors played a role in this fear of churches though. One being it feels like when you first walk in everyone stares at you and is judging you on your appearance and your morals. They don’t know you and you don’t know them but in your head you can feel the judgment piercing your thoughts. You may go there with some built up pain over life and events and feel as if anything you have done is far worse than what any of these other church goers have done, again judgment sinks in.

Second, you know you’ll listen to a sermon about something that may or may not cause you to cry. Which means others will now stare at you some more as you feel more and more isolated from those around you. Then not only do you feel judged but then you are judging others because you are thinking they must be better than you because they go to church all the time. And why aren’t they crying if you are crying, their has to be something wrong with you then.

Maybe no on else thinks like this?

I am starting my day today with hope. Ironic as saying that just now reminded me of the baby we lost that was named Hope and how Andy’s last words was he was going to take care of her in heaven. The past can never truly escape us but we can choose to live in the Now and let go of past pain and guilt, otherwise, life will be rather morbid and angry.

I start today with Hope. Hope for the benefit concert. Hope for little Billah in Uganda. Hope for Healing Eyes. Hope that somehow I’ll get some shampoo as my hotel size samples has exhausted itself.

If you fear churches but still want to come to the benefit concert than trust me when I say there will be no boring sermon and no judging stares. It’s a building full of people who have the same curiosity over life very far way and what we all should have a desire to do, helping orphans and widows who have reached the end of their hope in a series of unfortunate events.

Can’t make it on Sept 19th because your out of state? You still can support Healing Eyes by donating $8 for an absentee ticket. that is about 28,600 shillings in Uganda and would pay for one night lodging in October when I return to those orphans and widows in a distant land.

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Healing Eyes

Can it be as easy as saying Yes

Don’t judge an event by it’s cover and never doubt that when God says DO something that he won’t follow through.

What do you think of when you hear Benefit Concert or orphans in Africa?  Lots of cliche’s I bet and also completely over done publicity on needing to help the starving in Africa. I know it’s real and I also found photos of kids starving and all the hopelessness there too overwhelming to even think I could do something. Well that was 3 years ago back when life seemed simpler.  But life can still be SIMPLE, really!  If we just take a moment to view one child who captures our hearts and then connect with a few more as we open our hearts to more we can see how plausible it is to help the helpless. Orphans are supposed to be cared for and widows should step out and take charge. Through our weakness God can shine through and do all the work.

Case in point..

Tonight I met with some awesome people about the benefit concert. Never met them before and was going on a leap of faith it would turn out beneficial and that it was the right direction for Healing Eyes. I even ordered the post card mailers with there address on it for the venue before meeting them. Leap of Faith here we go.

What happened?

Well I was shown again how small I am in the grand scheme of things and that God already had it covered. I sat back and listened to this group of professionals plan out each part of the event, down to permits and parking and even filling holes in the grass. I just had to share my passion and my story as to why I am doing all of this and sit back and let God do what he had already laid ahead of me. Silly Sarah…worrying about how impossible a concert would be. It’s all taken care of and is definitely a GO!

If you want to see miracles than just come on by Sept 19th from 6-8pm and hear some good music and listen to me share my passion again for what we found in Africa to sink our teeth into as a non-profit. It really is amazing and so not me behind it all.

I’m just a little widow who gave it all up to find my first love again after my life was taken away…finding it amidst one small girl by a waterfall and hundreds of orphans luring me back home.

Go To Whoa a Benefit Concert  to order your ticket and sit front row to a miracle in the making

Healing Eyes

Whoa! Benefit Concert

Check out the Whoa Concert Page

Healing Eyes

Does hope live in us all? Or is it vanishing?

Why do we run from those in pain when we ourselves know pain?

Perhaps it’s just that sometimes pain is so blinding and can leave us so vulnerable to others. Perhaps it’s as simple as never even knowing there are still people in the world truly in pain but have no way to speak. It is my hope that Healing Eyes can be that voice and that sight for others to speak and be seen. There are hundred of kids in a tiny village right now in such pain but with no voice to scream out. No ears to hear them. No people to see them. Why should we care? That isn’t for me to say, it has to be a personal choice to care and to want to see the pain. To see pain in the eyes of someone so small who has never known ‘comfort’ in the world. To see hope in those eyes when it makes no sense to me how they can have hope when it seems so hopeless. My perspective on hope is skewed because I have seen what ‘comfort’ can be in life.

What can we offer a child in the middle of no where?

Hope! Real hope in others that love does exist.

That is part of what Project 616 is all about. Giving that hope and compassion back to the world in dire need of it. Most of the world live in conditions like this but we can’t SEE it without being told about it. Why? Well we are comfortable and why shouldn’t we be? We can! It’s ok to be and it’s a good thing that some of us can be comfortable. What can we do? We can help those who aren’t in that same comfortable environment. Share the compassion and love we are called to in our hearts. Deep down we know that life is about Relationships and Project 616 is about building that relationship with children in pain. By June of 2016 Healing Eyes hopes to have built the foundation for a relationship to grow in a land surrounded by pain and suffering. Yes I know Africa is a word that’s overused sometimes and orphans and hungry kids.. So please look past the stereotypes with me and be prepared to follow a story in the making. A young widow in search of love, adventure, and hope by holding onto a little bit of Faith that perhaps miracles do exist today! I will need prayer that the spark of faith doesn’t go out, that others will walk along side me to give me strength, and above all that the children are finally noticed for more than just a photo of a sad kid in a far away land.

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

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

Is that a pineapple in your purse?

As I walked across the border again, this time alone and after a few taxi hiccups and a mile walk thru Uganda to reach Kenya …I thought something is wrong with this picture. Then I realized this is perfectly normal to walk along the dirt road with cars and bikes buzzing by while I carry my ukulele on one side and my small bag on the other. Dodging semi trucks and onlooking people yelling mazungoo. Yup perfectly normal !

I spent three days in Uganda visiting Billah and her family by the waterfall. It was the highlight of my visit to Africa. I was sick but when I arrived the sickness left and I felt right for the first time in 5 weeks here. It was hard to go but I found out a lot about myself and my faith. Even got the answers I needed from God. He likes to wait until the last week to reveal his master plan. I can say this … It does involve orphans, widows, and yes it’s in Uganda and you can see Kenya from it. Is it land to buy? Nope! But it’s better and I feel very good about this direction.

More to come later. After I recover from being crammed into multiple taxis and yes, some even had people hanging outside the door. I can’t even explain how insane public taxis are! It’s like your cattle being herded without the ventilation. 

Oh pineapple?! My companions I met at the border after they went to Kampala and I went to mbale came back with a purse with pineapple in it. Uganda has the best pineapple! So not only were we crammed in taxis with 20 other people we had pineapples, bananas, ukulele, and bags. It’s definitely a disadvantage to have hips!

Healing Eyes