Board Member's perspective: I was looking to serve

Every few weeks in this space, one of RCE's directors or board members will share the heart and philosophy behind the ministry. This week's post is by Marti Carroll, a board member who uses her skills and gifts as a physical therapist to train and equip our team in Romania.

  Marti (R) with Natalia (L), the physical therapist at the Darius Houses, with one of RCE's recent Walkathon/Fun Run guests, Florinel.

Marti (R) with Natalia (L), the physical therapist at the Darius Houses, with one of RCE's recent Walkathon/Fun Run guests, Florinel.

One Saturday night a while back, I called my friend Kim in Seattle. She had lead me to the Lord years earlier and I asked her to join me in praying that God would reveal a new opportunity for me to serve as a part of the body of Christ. 

The very next morning, I sat in my usual place at the 8AM service at Fourth. Carmen and Mihai Bocsa of Romanian Christian Enterprises shared their vision for a home for disabled orphan children with us that day.  When they said they were in need of ‘MEDICAL HELP’ I thought it worth a conversation even though I really knew NOTHING about Romania and had little experience treating children.

After the service, I approached their Executive Director, Mary Ann Bell, and told her that I was a physical therapist and was WILLING TO HELP.  Mary Ann told me that I was the ‘answer to their prayers’ as they had been looking for a physical therapist to join their team.

That was 17 years ago. My life was forever changed. 

It was all so simple, wasn’t it? I was looking for something, I prayed. God was working all along and just wanted me to join him.

I have been to Romania dozens of times since, and I have witnessed MIRACLES!

An extended family reunited with an orphan child after years of searching, a little boy taking steps when every medical professional said walking was impossible. God transforming one life after another—disabled orphan child, broken family, poor widow, ME.

When I returned home from my first trip to Romania I very quickly realized that I was not at all the person I was before I left.  All the discomfort and uncertainty I felt as I prepared for the trip, only drew me closer to God and made me more dependent on Him, in the end.

It was no longer about me and what I wanted, but about God and what He wanted. I realized the futility of my own ways and experienced a radical change in my life as I began to understand what God desired for me.

As uncomfortable as it can be, there is such freedom that comes with relinquishing control and trusting the spirit’s leading.

Four weeks from now, I will be back in Romania partnering with God in his work there. Serving alongside dedicated believers who have little, yet have so much at the very same time.

My prayer is that each one of us can embrace that willingness to be just a bit uncomfortable and join in on the work that God is already doing all around us.

 Marti and Florinel again, this time with Cipri, one of RCE's physical therapists at the Sunshine School.

Marti and Florinel again, this time with Cipri, one of RCE's physical therapists at the Sunshine School.