The following is a guest blog post from PovRes volunteer Kendra Randolph.
For years, a family goal was to go on a mission trip together wherever God led us. However, as our family increased in number so did the cost of such a trip. When we began to check into a few mission organizations willing to take children on trips, we soon felt the cost of such a venture was out of our reach. In 2013, God placed on our hearts that it was time to make such a trip, but where and when we had no idea. Then in 2014, we discovered Poverty Resolutions, who were more than willing to let our four children, ages 9 to 14 at that time, join them on their June trip to Haiti.
After reviewing Poverty Resolution’s trip plan, it seemed like the perfect fit for our family. The cost of the trip for 6 people was a true leap of faith for us. However, we were sure God had called our family to do this. The total amount we figured we needed to raise was around $12,000, which would include the cost of the trip, passports, shots, medicine, and some basic supplies needed.
We began by sending out support letters to family and friends. I must admit there were some restless nights when I thought about the money we needed to raise and how would we do that. We found that when we laid our burden down at Christ’s throne one night, there was no more need to worry. Within 12 hours of turning it over to Him, we were handed a thousand dollar check. The funds began pouring in, allowing us to often pay the amount due to Poverty Resolutions days or even weeks early. For the second payment, we still owed $90 due the next Sunday. On Tuesday of that week, our family decided to just pray for that $90 and not worry about any of the future payments. That very day, God was very gracious and in the mail was a check for $100 from someone we never dreamed could help us. Our second payment was now completely covered.
To help with the final payment, we were blessed over and over with opportunities for us to perform work and sell items in order to raise the funds we needed. Our family joined together in the work and, before we knew it, all the funds needed were raised. Not only that, but we now had more than the $12,000 we needed allowing us to help others as well to bring more supplies for the orphanage than we could have ever imagined.
As if God’s moving to allow us to go wasn’t enough, what He did in each of us while we were there was incredible. Each of our children came back moved with the desire to go back in the future to serve again in Haiti and possibly other places. Their eyes have been opened and their hearts have been changed forever. Experiencing Haiti first-hand allowed them to understand things so much better and appreciate all they have so much more. Were there challenges? Yes, but they all agree that those challenges were certainly worth it to see the beauty of the country, experience the fun, have the joy in helping the Haitian people, and see what God is doing around the world.
Our first family mission trip was a success and I can’t say it will be our last! Our kids were changed and moved to serve not only the Haitian people but for the Lord in their future in whatever way He calls them. For us, as their parents, we, too, were dramatically changed. We thought we were taking our family on a mission trip to open their eyes and show them more about serving. But God moved in our hearts in ways we could never have imagined. We have no idea where this journey we started in Haiti will take us, but God showed us His power, His will for us, and His provisions and we are excited to be joining Him in his work. It will definitely be an experience we never forget and look forward to traveling back to Haiti soon.
Kendra Randolph accompanied her family to Haiti in June, 2014. She and her husband, Ed, returned in November, 2014, and look forward to seeing what God does in 2015!