Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Team Leader Tuesday spotlight: Kerri Ballard

Going on a mission’s trip was never a thought until I heard the story of Katie Davis. After reading her book Kisses from Katie I knew God was calling me to do something outside of my comfort zone. Before going on my first Visiting Orphans trip everyone always asked, “Are you nervous?” I knew God was calling me to go and nothing was going to stop me. What God had in store was so much more than I could have ever hoped or thought.

The team I went with became instant family. I even met my ‘sister’ on the team. That bond is still there today, two years later, only because God knew I needed it for the trip and for what was happening in my personal life.

When I arrived in Uganda I cried from the moment my feet hit the red dirt till about two weeks after I returned home. I am forever grateful for the experiences that I had on my first trip. Seeing children and grown adults touch and taste clean water for the very first time, seeing children smile even though they sleep on a dirt floor, playing jump rope with teenagers, and caring for babies that don’t have a parent to tell them “I love you” forever rocked my world. Pictures of orphans had become real to me - they were actual people with a name and a face.

 When I returned home my first night I wanted to sleep on the floor. Why me? Why do I get to have a bed, clothes to wear, a nice house, and a family that loves me?  Those were just a few of the questions I was asking God. Then He made it all very clear to me. You know the saying here in America—Rags to riches. Well, he told me I have it all wrong. True riches have nothing to do with material wealth. It’s all about Him, our relationship with the Father.  We only experience true joy and riches when we totally and completely trust Jesus and put our faith in Him alone.

That is why I’m so passionate about Visiting Orphans and missions. My life was forever changed by going and being the hands and feet of Jesus. I want everyone to have the opportunity to experience what I have experienced. Putting others first and loving the orphan has caused me to love people more and to care less about temporary things that will soon pass away.

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