Mission Trips - Our 1st Trip to Belize
On December 6, 2011, our small group of first-time mission workers left for the small country of Belize to see what God had in store for us. The group was comprised of a couple of Sha's female friends, Britney, Sha's 28-year-old sister, Levi, her 16-year-old cousin, her Aunt Jan, her grandmother, a family friend and her parents. When we arrived, two extraordinary young men from Alabama joined us. These inexperienced greenhorns' lives were about to be forever changed.
Our first stop was at the Dorothy Menzies Childcare Center in Belize City. The children immediately swarmed us vying for attention. We visited for a short while and promised them we would return the next day.
We did return and spent most of the day with these precious children. We brought them pizza, made witness bracelets with them, passed out soccer balls and other small items. We gave the girls hair bows that Sha's aunt and sister-in-law had made form the colorful ribbons that once had adorned Sha's grave site. But, most importantly, we gave the children attention and made them feel special for a little while. These children proved to be the focal point of our efforts and served as a catalyst to the formation of SHA Missions.
The next day we visited The Hostel, a home for troubled youth and The Golden Haven, a home for the elderly. At The Hostel, we gave the children soccer balls, played soccer and volleyball with them, and listened to their stories. We could tell some of them had hope for a better tomorrow, but many of them had become bitter and had little hope for a brighter tomorrow.
At The Golden Haven we listened to the wise older people tell of their families and lessons learned in life. Many of them praised Jesus for their lives and shared their love of Him with us. Kit, one of the young men with us, witnessed to Clarence, an old man still not ready to accept Jesus as his Lord and Savior. Kit left broken hearted, but hopeful that Clarence would profess Jesus before long. We also rubbed lotion on wrinkled skin trying to follow Jesus' example of serving and satisfying the human need for touch. Britney, a physical therapist by trade, provided therapy to several patients.
We worked with the people of Hattieville Baptist Church cleaning the grounds, washing the outside of the church to prepare it for a paint job, teaching Sunday School lessons, preparing food bags and distributing them to the poor, and learning how to worship in truth and spirit with these wonderful people filled with the love of Jesus.
We were also blessed to experience the healing of God through climbing atop the ancient Mayan Ruins and seeing the majesty of God's glory and feeling His love wash over us on the shores of a quiet undisturbed island. This time of reflection brought us peace and stirred a passion in each of us to share hope around with everyone that we possibly can.
Written by Jeanine Wetherington,