I was supposed to be at home, preparing for the birth of our second child.
I was supposed to be wide and waddling, waist deep in new baby gear.
Instead, I’m sitting in a hotel room in Chisinau, Moldova and I am overwhelmed with gratitude for the plan God had for me.
When Nicole first approached me about joining this team to Moldova, I told her that as much as I would love the opportunity, I had to turn her down. My due date was in February, so there was no way I could go out of the country in January.
But then that didn’t happen. At 10 weeks into the pregnancy, that baby was gone.
As my husband and I worked through the grief, we remembered the invitation to Moldova, and we both felt it was an opportunity I could not miss.
I didn’t know why I was drawn to this trip. I had not heard much about Moldova until a few months before, when suddenly the name of this tiny European country kept popping up. And while the issue of human trafficking made me sad, I can’t say I had a particular passion for it – at least not more than any other issue worthy of attention.
Even as I met the other team members and we prepared for the trip, I didn’t have a strong sense of what I had to contribute. I decided to just be available and to ask God to make me sensitive to His leading.
Tonight I saw at least part of the reason I am here.
There is a girl…we’ll call her Jill…who looks about 14 but is actually 21. I met her on Monday during an activity session, and she struck me as effervescent in her interactions. This joyful young girl smiled and laughed as we worked on art journals, and she impressed me with her talent and her choices of images.
Tonight as we spent time with the girls, she approached me directly and asked me (through an interpreter) if I would pray for her and invite my friends and my church to pray as well. She told me just a bit of her story and her struggles, and my heart broke for her. Through tears Jill asked me to pray for her faith to be strong, for her ability to forgive family members, for her to find a good job, and for a health concern.
I told her, again through an interpreter, that I would gladly pray for her and invite others to do so as well. Then I asked if I could pray for her right then and there. She agreed, and we prayed together. I prayed a line, Veniamin translated, and back and forth it went. About halfway through I realized a hush had fallen over the room as others in the team watched and joined in silently.
I was in the middle of a holy moment. As I prayed, God whispered to my heart. “This is why I called you to Moldova. This is part of why you are here.” Even now I weep at His graciousness to give me such an opportunity to be there for Jill, a young woman who struggles with her faith, her relationships and her situation.
I could be bitter about the loss of pregnancy, about missing the child I will never meet. But I choose instead to be overwhelmed with thankfulness that God allowed me to be here for such a time as this.
Would you join me in praying for Jill and the needs she expressed?