Jacmel, Haiti –
March 10, 2018
Recently, Jim Needham from Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa came out to Cross to Light in Haiti. His purpose was to complete a 20K run that was being held in Jacmel. He has run in marathons for many years all over the world and wanted to run in Haiti. He made the overnight flight from California and arrived on a Thursday into Port au Prince. He was picked up, rested that night and then made the trip to Jacmel.
As is typical with a mission trip, Jim received many character tests along the way to accomplishing his goal. He had initially made a reservation at a hotel in Jacmel online. When he arrived to check in he had to change his accommodations to a hotel that was across the street. At first, he was a little distressed by the unexpected change. However, he was soon to discover that it turned out to be a much better place and was right on the beach front. He couldn’t have been happier with the change.
The next day, starting at 6:15 AM was the kick-off for the race. There were several factors that Jim had been preparing for. One is that Haiti is very humid. He had been condition training but wasn’t sure if he was prepared enough. The morning of the race he loaded up on electrolyte supplements and chia seeds. Another element to this race is around midway through, there were steep dirt roads and trails that rose well above the starting point sea level elevation. He wasn’t sure how he was going to handle that along with the heat and humidity so he prayed that the Lord would help him. Just seconds after this quick prayer two small children stood smiling next to Jim, each one grabbing his hands and proceeded to pull him up a steep dirt road; these two children felt like angels that had been sent to give him a special kind of strength. As they were smiling and holding his hands he made it up to the top of the hill.
Out of the mouth of babes and nursing infants
You have ordained strength,
Because of Your enemies,
That You may silence the enemy and the avenger.
At another point during the race, a man split open a coconut for him and gave it to him to drink. If it wasn’t for having to finish the race Jim would have enjoyed the coconut and the man’s company all day.
Although Jim has had many different places under his feet while running in a race, he has never had answers to his prayer for strength unfold quite like that.
Pray to God for help and expect the unexpected.
We’re all in a race. Keep praying and asking God for your help. He will come through. It may not be what you thought but it will be exactly what you need.