Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Epilogue to Caitlin Ann's soon-coming book

Twenty-six countries.  Nineteen months.  Countless flat tires, car breakdowns, personal freak-outs, sleepless nights, and moments of roaring laughter.  And then, in a blink of an eye, our journey was really over.

When I joined the Iris Latin America team in September 2011, I had no idea what I was getting myself into.  My planned eleven months on the road quickly turned into nineteen, and I’d be lying if I said the journey wasn’t far more than I’d bargained for.  I was stretched in ways I never dreamt possible; sometimes the process was so painful I thought I would burst.

I think it’s safe to say that my teammates would agree.  None would claim that this trip came without challenges.  Honestly, there were many tough moments not recorded in this book — times when we prayed for people who didn’t get healed, instances when we couldn’t agree on decisions no matter how long we talked them over, moments when we all felt like giving up.  We would be deceiving you if we said no one ever got cranky, tired, or frustrated.  Sometimes we whined about stupid things or cried out of sheer exhaustion or snuck away to secret places in an attempt to hide from the world. 

As I’ve shared testimonies of miracles and healings, far too many people have responded, “I could never do what your team did.”  But we weren’t the ones doing it in the first place.  I can’t heal anyone on my own, nor can anyone I know.  It is the Holy Spirit moving through us that heals.  The purpose of sharing our story is not so that readers can put me and my teammates on a pedestal.  If that’s all I’ve accomplished throughout this book, then I have failed you.  We are not heroes; we are not superhuman.  We are ordinary people with extraordinary dreams.  And we’ve simply said “yes” to the extraordinary God who fulfills them.

When God invites us into His story, I believe it’s our responsibility to share it with others.  I want the world to know what God is up to, because He’s up to amazing stuff!  I want the world to know that God still heals cancer, opens deaf ears, causes the lame to walk, grows out limbs, opens blind eyes, heals backs, and sets people free.  I want people to know that anybody — anybody — can be a part of these testimonies.  God delights in letting us be a part of His story.  And yes, certain chapters will come at a very real cost.  However, the things sacrificed will never compare to the things gained.  Nothing this world has to offer can compete with the pure, unconditional love of Jesus Christ.  My God is amazing.  

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