Today I want to share with you my friend Marisa’s story. Below is an excerpt of a story that I wrote for a local paper, the Leon Springs Community News.
For several years, Marisa has felt a “call” to go to Africa, but parenting, in her words, has come “with some sacrifices.” Like a lot of dedicated women with small children, she’s deferred a personal dream, choosing to be pliant to the demands of motherhood.
As a pediatric nurse by training, however, Marisa has a particular skills set potentially of great benefit to families with severely limited healthcare.
In a letter sent out to friends and family on May 23, Marisa described how in late 2011, she told her husband of her “frustrations and how I felt called to Africa but hadn’t yet been able to go. So Nate and I started praying for God’s leading on whether this was the time to go or not.”
Although she knew she could find options by looking online, she prayed for the right opportunity to reveal itself.
Within just a few weeks, an announcement was made at her church, Leon Springs Baptist, that “there would be a medical mission trip going to Ethiopia and there would be a meeting about it the following Sunday.”
For Marisa, this was an indication that “God answered my specific prayer very specifically!”
Later in the story:
She has signed on to a medical mission trip to Meki, a town in east-central Ethiopia. In 2005, the population was estimated at 36,000 residents. In Meki, and assuming Marisa can raise the $4,000 for the trip, the nurse-turned-mother-turned-missionary will work in a new clinic built by CrossWay Internaional primarily for women and children. Previously, there was no doctor or medical clinic available.
I’m sharing her story with you here, on the blog, because I know a lot of you–like me and Marisa–are parents who may have set aside a dream, even temporarily, to put our families first.
Marisa tells me that she’s close to her individual fundraising goal of $4,000 to make the trip.
I’ve kicked in a few dollars myself because I simply can’t imagine a more qualified, loving person to go help women and children.
If you’d like to join me in supporting her endeavor, you can make a donation in her honor via CrossWay International, the group that is arranging the trip. Payment options can be found here. (If you make payment via Paypal and want to make absolutely certain the money is set aside specifically for Marisa, you can send a note to the group here.)