for about a year & a half, I had been planning a trip to Africa with my good friend who takes a team of nurses there twice a year. she wanted me to come & photograph their time going from village to village, helping kids along the way. I was so stoked because Africa has always been close to my heart & photography!? heck yeah!

then about two weeks ago, she messaged me & told me it was no longer safe to take a team out there. my heart dropped. I had felt so strongly for so long that this is what I was suppose to be doing. didn’t God want me to serve? didn’t He want me to help? all of these doubts & questions started rushing through me but as I was about to lose my cool, He stopped me & whispered to me softly, “Trust me.” But God, how am I suppose to trust You when I have been planning this for so – “Trust me.” As much as I wanted to freak out, I knew what he was telling me. I knew there was something else he wanted me to do or somewhere we wanted me to go. so I said, okay. I trust you.

so for the next week I started messaging & emailing & registering for all of these different organizations & missions trips. & get this, NOT ONE emailed me back. Hmm, okay God- you told me to trust you, but no doors are opening for me, what does this mean? He whispered again, “just trust me.” at that moment, it dawned on me that my cousin had spent a good chunk of her year traveling the world & I knew she had helped in an orphanage in Haiti along the way! I quickly messaged her and asked for the orphanages information. Not expecting anything, I emailed the lady who runs the orphanage to see if they needed any help at all. she messaged me back saying “We have been praying diligently for you. We have been seeking & praying for a school teacher for some time now- is that something you would be interested in? Since we can not pay you, we would want to pay for your flight & make sure you have a place to stay while you’re here. Let me know what you think.”
my emotions were floored. it went from “wow- what?! amazing!” to, “wait. what? a school teacher?? I can’t do that.” I wrestled with this idea for a few days. I’m not a school teacher, I’m a wedding photographer – how am I, going to be able to help these kids? I explained to her that I am NOT a teacher & that I’m simply a wedding photographer. she replied beautifully and said, “I don’t care about your degree, I care about your heart. if you have a heart to help kids & to make the lessons fun for them, then you will be perfect.” even though she was saying all of these beautiful things, I still was back and forth about it. “this is just way too far outside of my comfort zone.” I cried to my parents. they responded gracefully and said “Teresa, you don’t have to be perfect to help these kids. God will work through your imperfections.” I was blown away. They were so right! So I took a step of faith & I emailed the lady at the orphanage right away & said yes – I would love to serve!

Sometimes, God likes to push us wayyyy out of our comfort zone so we can truly rely on Him for the strength, the energy & the wisdom that we need. So from March 11th – April 19th I will be serving at an orphanage in Haiti. My heart is honestly so excited to see how God will continue to teach & guide me as I serve in Haiti.