God At Work: 2017 Georgetown, St. Vincent
I stepped off the small puddle jumper plane, legs weary from traveling, and breathed in the hot Caribbean night air. Although I was worn out, I was full of hope and excitement for the potential of the week ahead. Once we got through customs, we were welcomed by the entire team from Harvest St. Vincent. My soul was instantly warmed by their cheerful greetings and they knew us each by name. They had been praying for us long before we arrived.
We loaded up in two vehicles and began driving the steep winding roads that had been built into the mountains of the island. It was very dark and hard to make out much of the landscape, but I felt God’s peace resting on me. That night as I laid my head down to the sound of hard rain on the metal roof, I asked God to use me in whatever capacity he desired and for whatever purpose he had brought me to this island.
Jesus Is Building His Church
Harvest Bible Chapel is a church that desires to multiply. We are disciples who want to make disciples that make disciples. Therefore, we have a passion for planting churches, here in the States, as well as around the world. The need for strong churches in the Caribbean is dire and so we have taken the lead on planting another church in St. Vincent in a town called Georgetown. My husband, Cody, and I, along with five other individuals, traveled down there this past April to continue building a relationship with Pastor Miché. At the time, there were 25 people who had committed to being on the core team to prepare to launch the church by the end of this year. That number has since grown.
As I got acquainted with the island, the culture, and the people of SVG, I began to feel God weaving my heart into the beautiful tapestry of his global Church. The more I hung out with Miché, his wife Monique, and the core group members, I realized it doesn’t matter where you live or what your culture or language is. When you have the common bond of Christ as the foundation, it becomes easy to forge friendships and share how God is working in your life. If you allow yourself to open up and step out of your comfort zone, then you can quickly reach a deeper level of relationship with other brothers and sisters in Christ.
A Praying People
One of the biggest things that touched me as I was in SVG was the priority they put on prayer. Everything we did was bathed in prayer and brought before God’s throne. I think the Indy West team was all “praying” as we drove around those curvy streets that we wouldn’t get sideswiped or hit a small child or animal. But there were several times when Miché literally stopped the car in the middle of the road and we all got out to pray. We prayed for Georgetown. We prayed for the schools. We prayed for the police and government. We prayed for open hearts and a ripe harvest for a church plant. We prayed for partnerships with the community and opportunities to engage with people. We prayed for families, kids, and young adults. Nothing was off limits to pray about and we took every opportunity to bring it all before the Lord.
Bringing It Home
We were simply there to serve, encourage, and begin to build relationships with our brothers and sisters in SVG. I feel that God used this space and brought much blessing. I still talk to several of the women I began friendships with and we continue to sharpen each other with encouragement and prayer, even though miles apart. My conviction now is to bring this same openness and vulnerability to my relationships here at home. I want to step out of my comfort zone right here where God has placed me and go deeper in relationships. I want to make prayer as necessary as breathing and go before God with all of life. As it says in one of my favorite verses in Scripture, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth” (Psalm 46:10). I want to be present in the moment to be used by God however he sees fit, not just on an International Beyond Our Walls trip, but at all times.