This past June, I was blessed to be able to go on my very first mission trip to Belize, Central America. I wasn’t sure what to expect from this week, but I was excited to go and share God’s love with the Belizian people. I went to teach and share, but it was ME who learned so very much from the amazing people that I met. My heart and my outlook will never be the same!
One amazing person I met during my visit to Belize is a village nurse named Raquel. She is one of the most caring and compassionate women I have ever met. Because the doctor only sees patients in Raquel’s village for 3 hours every 60 days, she “stands in the gap” for the patients in between their doctor’s visit. Whether it’s walking or riding a bicycle she only recently acquired, Raquel visits the village residents. On top of performing basic medical care and monitoring, she does so much for her community. She shares information to educate her patients and holds classes for the community to attend so they can learn and have a better understanding of different issues. She is a comfort and encouragement to those who are scared, anxious, or afraid. She has opened a sewing class in the medical clinic so that the women in the community can learn to sew, which is just one of the many ways she empowers her community. These women make different items to sell so that they can provide for their families. They often sell the items that they make in order to purchase diapers or formula for their babies. In a tiny clinic with no running water, this woman is a blessing to this community of 2,002 people. While her circumstances are challenging, her faith is strong. She leans on The Savior and points others to Him.
This small, Belizian village reminded me of some of the services that we provide here at Choices Clinic. We offer similar services to the people in our community. Our goal at Choices is not only to provide medical services such as pregnancy tests, ultrasounds, and STI testing/treatment, but to also offer comfort, encouragement and hope to those who are scared, anxious, and afraid by sharing the gospel of Christ’s love, grace and forgiveness with our clients. We also provide information so that our clients can make informed choices in numerous areas of their lives.
Our material assistance program is based around offering group classes that educate women with life skills to empower them so that they are able to make a difference in their families and in their communities. Our classes include topics such as Bible Study, Nutrition, Parenting, Healthy Relationships, Self-care, Boundaries, Budgeting, and Goal Setting. With every class they attend, clients earn vouchers that allow them to receive material items from our Blessing Center to be able to provide for their families. We want to offer our clients a “Hand Up,” not a “Hand Out.”
While I witnessed “material poverty” during my time in Belize, I also witnessed “spiritual wealth.” I saw true FAITH IN ACTION. People trusting God in ways that we don’t often see. Trusting in God in all circumstances can be challenging. We at Choices want to be able to “stand in the gap” for our clients during these difficult times. We want to pray with them and for them. And as we pray, encourage, help, and comfort, we always want to point them to the One who holds us all together. God is faithful and good, no matter what our circumstances look like.
If you are interested in teaching a group class or donating material items to our Blessing Center, please call or come by the clinic.
It truly takes a “village,” and we can’t do it without you!