Experience God In A New Way
by Danielle Dotts
Have you ever felt invisible? It’s something that I find so many people struggle with. One of the most powerful ways I have been able to experience God and minister to others is through making them feel seen and cared about. God does incredible things in our own hearts as we submit ourselves to Him and put ourselves in a place to be used by Him. We have millions of opportunities for this where we live, but there is something so different by purposefully traveling to another country to love people. Stepping outside of our comfort zone and our culture, I have seen how incredibly wealthy we really are being in the top 1% of the wealthiest in the world and how hungry the materially poor are to hear the gospel and trust in God for miracles.
On a mission trip to Oaxaca, Mexico, we were able to provide eye glasses to an entire village. When we arrived for the first day of our eye glass clinic, I stood in awe as I watched a sea of people arrive to get their eyes looked at. It was amazing, but something was different. I realized as I looked at the faces of people that the majority of them were all over the age of 70. I had never seen so many elderly in one place before. There were hardly any kids, just elderly. I began to walk through the lines greeting people and making small talk, conversation after conversation began to paint a very sad picture. Person after person, story after story was a theme of abandonment. Most of these people had been abandoned by their families in the pursuit of a better life in the United States. Many of these people hadn't even talked to their kids in years.
One lady named Gloria had a husband and two sons who left her and her daughter in law for work in the US. Her husband died in the US and she has not seen her sons in over 15 years. This is just one story out of hundreds maybe even thousands. One day I stood over the crowd and watched the people and the verse James 1:27 came to mind, it stated that true undefiled religion or worship to God was to take care of widows and orphans.
At first thought I understood widow but the Lord was highlighting the word orphan. When I would think of the word orphan the first thing that came to mind is children, but the Lord was changing my paradigm that orphan doesn't just have to do with kids but can also pertain to adults, these elderly had been orphaned by their families with nobody to care for them most in their 80's. I am so thankful that God is bringing me into a place that I may worship him in a pure and undefiled way. It's truly a blessing to be able to love those who have been rejected, to bring hope to the hopeless, am being joy to those who have been forgotten.
On another trip to the Philippines I really grew to love the people there. It’s amazing how quickly and how strong you can experience the supernatural love of our Father for His people. I met this little girl and we had an instant connection. She reminded me so much of myself.
Her name is Vanessa and she was 11 years old, I loved her instantly and my love for this little girl was a small taste of His love for me.
Vanessa gave me this letter the day we left:
" Dear Sister Danielle,
Hello my sweet sister. I love you very very much. You are so beautiful. I want to play with you and sleep over at your house. When you go back to America, I miss you so so much. I promise I never forget you to be my friend. You are so very very sweet sister and loving girl. Your heart is pure and you walk with Jesus. Every night I pray and ask God that He would guide you. I have a big BIG dream that you live here in Caniogan with me. I want to swim in the sea with you. You see the star in the sky, it is so beautiful like you. I want you to live here in Caniogan with me. Thank you and I love you.
God loves you so much. Please take care this letter,
Vanessa Mendoza "
I have been given the incredible privilege to minister to the broken in this world; To love on His behalf, with His heart. I want to ask you this question:
What if all the pain in your life, God has sovereignly allowed, so that you can minister to others? Are you willing to step outside of your comfort zone to be used by God in incredible and powerful ways, changing the lives He brings in your path.