Horners in Haiti:
Answering the Call.
Bryan and Alecia Horner
September 10, 2013
God started a fire, years ago, he started a passion in our hearts for the lost people of this world. You see, when I (Alecia) was only about 8 years old it was prophesied over my life that I would be a missionary. It was confirmed throughout my life and then as I grew up and got married it was spoken again over my marriage and my family. A few years went by and we weren’t sure where we were to go or how we were to be a part of the mission field but we trusted that God knew those things. We went about our lives and answered God’s call on our lives of adoption; overseas, 2 times; 3 kids. We then came back and felt the Lord leading us in a different direction. We began to really seek what it was God had for us and still were not sure of when or how or what was next. Fast forward to May 20, 2013. The day of the worst tornado in the history of the world. My family and I were taking shelter in the Moore Medical Center when it took a direct hit from that EF-5 and was destroyed. We felt the hand of God over us and honestly, we thought it was there to pick us up and take us home. None of us ever expected to walk out of that building alive, much less unscathed! God in his great mercy and infinite wisdom had other plans. You see, we shouldn’t have lived through that tornado. We should have died in all human reasoning, that building should have imploded on us; but it didn’t. We were spared. This was a wake up call for us. We felt more than ever that God had a call on our lives and had left us here for a very specific reason and that was to impact this world for him and for his kingdom! We began to cry out to God to show us why he saved us. What did he want us to do?
A couple of weeks after the tornado we were in our church service and our pastor was teaching over missions. This was a break in a series that he was doing as he felt the Lord leading him to preach on missions and the call to do one of two things.. SEND or GO. He did say we had one other option and that was to sin. I knew in my heart of hearts that we are the ones that are called to GO. I didn’t know what that looked like as in where or when. I began to wrestle with God over this during the closing prayer time before the altar was open for ministry. I was trying to rationalize what was going on in my life. I was saying “well, maybe those guys got it wrong.” “Maybe we aren’t supposed to go?” “Maybe we are supposed to go when the kids are older.” They are older. “Maybe when they all grow up?” Maybe when they get married.” “No, we’ll want to be here for college” “We can’t miss out on weddings and grandkids.” Before I knew it I had “maybe’d” my life away! I was in the grave and hadn’t done anything of what the Lord was now calling me to do. I tried rationalizing that by us paying our tithe we are sending. I couldn’t shake it though. I know.. I am to go! We are to GO!
I then began telling God how I wanted confirmation that what I was feeling in my spirit was REALLY him. I felt him telling me to go down for prayer and surrender to the call. I said “Ok God, if this is really what you want me to do.. you’ll tell me who to go to for prayer.” to which he responded “open your eyes.” I opened my eyes and saw two sets of feet walking side by side and quickly closed my eyes again thinking, “Ok, if those people are actually there to pray for people and not going down for prayer themselves then I’ll know.” “Oh, and if you really want me to go, you’ll tell Bryan too.” The prayer was concluded, the worship music started up and the altars were open. I raised my head from prayer and felt Bryan grabbing my hand. I looked at him and his eyes welled up and the tears were streaming down his face as he said “we need to go, we’ve gotta go.” I questioned this in my heart and thought, “ok does he mean go as in GO or does he mean go for prayer because of all the stress we’ve been under since the tornado?” I again went to God with yet another IF.. “if it is for us to GO GO then, you’ll tell him to go to the same people you told me to.. AND, you’ll tell him to tell them that we are supposed to be missionaries and that we need to surrender to the call... THEN I’ll KNOW for sure!”
Bryan and I went hand in hand and headed towards the row of people available to pray over us. We walked right past the first two people and he went directly to the couple that God had told me to go to! He began pouring out his heart and saying exactly what my heart was screaming inside. We are to go! We need to know from God where he wants us to go and when. I could no longer hold the tears in and they came streaming like the floodgates had opened. The woman looked at me and said, “Are you ok? Are you in agreement with this?” All I could do was nod my head and just bawl. God had been so gracious to answer each and every one of my silly requests for confirmation and had done it to the “T”. My heart was overwhelmed and I was so ready to see what was next for us. The couple prayed with us and encouraged us in some practical steps to take in seeking out what God has for us next. We went on from that prayer so excited; we got our kids and headed home.
Over the next couple of days I felt such a sense of urgency and excitement over what God was doing in the heavenly realms in regards to our future with missions and felt that we were on the verge of something great! A couple of days later I woke up with a sense of urgency and excitement that I just could not contain and knew that God was up to something big and felt he was about to reveal it to us. I posted this on my Facebook status and as I began to scroll through my newsfeed I saw a post from a friend about her mom’s new orphanage in Haiti. I pm’d her and asked how on earth we hadn’t talked about this before and she suggested I like the page and check it out- which I had already done! Within minutes of me liking the page her mom added me as a friend. I accepted her friend request and messaged her that we were currently seeking out where God would have us to serve permanently and asked her to tell me more about her organization. Her response... Come. Come with us and you’ll know if this is where you are to serve. WOW. That was kind of like Jesus with the disciples. No explanation, no questions, just come.. follow me. I got some of the logistical details such as cost and time frame of the next trip; fully expecting it to be the same time next year as she had just returned and instead I was told August 3. August 3?! That was only a few weeks away!
Ok God, if this is you, you can make this happen. I told her if God provided childcare for our 6 kids and the funding to go we’d be there. I really wasn’t sure how that was going to work out but I trusted that if it was of God and in his timing then he’s provide. Well, he did. Childcare was immediately taken care of; which with 6 kids is no small feat! I made some calls and checked online fares and found the amount we’d need to get our tickets booked and handed it over to God. We prayed and asked God to provide if this is what he had for us. With our situation as it was after being in the tornado we didn’t have that much coming in through our business, definitely not enough extra to cover this trip. I was due to head to Andrews, NC with our youth group for a week long summer camp in a week and that wouldn’t leave much time for us to take on any extra business or even market for more. I had to trust God to provide in his own way, not my way or my idea.
We had a customer come in and give us an envelope from a little girl in California that had a letter enclosed telling us that God had told her to send us this money and tell us to use it how he told us to. I had set the envelope with the $400 on my night stand and left it there waiting to see what else God would do. Shortly after the tornado I had received a call from a friend that wanted to donate to our family to help us get a vehicle to replace the one we lost in the tornado. She said they were going to sell their car and give us the proceeds. I hadn’t heard anything in a while and had assumed that hadn’t panned out and had forgotten about it. I got a call from her saying that they had sold the car and had a check for $1000 to give to us to help with a new car. I told her that God had actually provided a car for us and asked her to pray and speak with her husband and see if God told them to give it to us knowing it wouldn’t go to a car. She said she would and would get back with me. July 14 was our daughter Aliyah’s birthday and we were having a party at our shop that day after church. I got a call from that same friend that morning and she wanted to come by and give me a check saying that God had told her to give it to us with no stipulations and to use it how he told us to. WOW! OK, we now have $1400 out of the approximate $2800 needed.
I went to camp that evening and praised God for his provision thus far and over the week continued to praise him and prayed for God to make it even clearer what he wanted us to do and if he wanted us to go to Haiti that he would provide the remaining funds. During the camp week we had many breakout sessions and small group times and sermons that were all pointing to missions and the call of God on our lives to tell the world about him. I became more and more excited about it! When I came home I had an envelope in the mail from Autismcares.org. You see, when we were in the tornado word spread and we were contacted by Autismcares.org telling us to please share our story with them as they were helping families that were affected by the tornado with $1000 grants. I had responded with our story and they contacted us telling us we had been chosen as a recipient; this was in early June I believe and it was now late July. I had figured they ran out of funds or we didn’t get in in time or some mistake was made and we weren’t going to get the funds after all. I opened that letter and in it was a check for $1000! We now had $2400! We could come up with $400 somehow I was sure and of course, God provided! I was amazed at how the Lord had provided! We booked our flights and we were ready to go to Haiti August 3, 2013. I just love how God works in miraculous ways with his provision!
Horners in Haiti
Fast forward a bit and we have made our way to Haiti. We spent several days working at Agape Girls Orphanage spending time with the kids as well as putting in a bathroom with a shower for them. We also worked at Hope House orphanage and built a chicken coop there and just organized things to prepare the home for children (it’s a new orphanage). We also spent time in a tent city. This was the day it all came together for us. It clicked when we were there. As we went tent to tent ministering to each of these families my heart was set. Seeing these people so full of joy and hope even in the midst of total devastation still willing to hear about God and others even coming back from their own mission trips. I am just in awe of the beautiful masterpiece God is working in Haiti. We ministered to families that believed, families that had no clue who Jesus is, and even some who were wrapped in VooDoo. God was with us and we could see him at work all around us and we were so thrilled to be joining him in his work! Bryan and I both felt such a pull to stay and join in the harvest. We prayed and asked God to continue to move and to show us what he wanted us to do in Haiti. (if you want to read more about our tim in Haiti scroll back a few blog posts and see all the pics and read the stories!)
In addition to the tent city being a time of great healing and nourishment for the people there as well as us, we also met with Pastor Diosmy, the founder of Agape Girls Orphanage and Christian Ministries Association in Haiti. Pastor Diosmy has several churches as well as the orphanage, schools, and is in the process of opening a Bible College. The college is set to open in November of 2013. As he shared the vision the Lord gave him of this college with us we were so excited to see what God was doing. He asked us to come and teach at the school. We will be teaching ESL, life skills such as cooking and sewing, as well as Bible Classes. We couldn’t be more thrilled about this opportunity to partner with him in the college, orphanage, schools and churches! Our main focus will be raising up pastors through the college to do church plants all over Haiti and spread the Gospel all throughout the nation! SO EXCITING! We will also be spending time at Agape Girls orphanage and feel that the Lord will eventually have us open an orphanage of our own. We plan to have a home that is large enough to host missionary teams as well as have it be open for those in need in our own community. God has carried us through so much in our lives and has opened so many doors for us to do this. We can’t wait to see what he does next! We can see how God has woven this common thread through our lives for years.
We have partnered with King’s Cross Ministries, a non-profit based out of Owasso, OK to start our missionary journey. Jason and Ginger Lovan are the founders as well as missionaries on the ground in northern Haiti. They have been praying for missionaries to come to expand their mission across Haiti. We contacted them and they reviewed our info and contacted us to bring us on board! What we would like to seek is Bridgeway’s blessing, commissioning, and financial support of our ministry as we seek to do the Lord’s work in Carrefour, Haiti.
We are currently in the process of selling all our belongings to be able to move to Haiti. Pastor Diosmy is actively seeking housing for us and we have a couple of viable options. We have also found a vehicle that will suite our family and ministry needs. The anticipated upfront cost of moving our family with travel, house, and car will be approximately $18,000 to $20,000. We are budgeting for monthly expenses of $2500 which will cover standard living expenses, a sinking fund for our next year’s rent, and travel back home.
We appreciate your time and willingness to prayerfully consider our mission and partner with us in the work the Lord has set before us. We cannot wait to be boots on the ground and working with the people of Haiti. We have already started our Haitian Creole lessons, have shut down our retail location of our business and are listing our home this week! We have work to do until November 16th and will spend the rest of the month visiting family for Thanksgiving and then we will head to Florida in our vehicle and stop to visit a few family and friends on the way. We will fly out of Florida and arrive in Haiti sometime in early to middle December.
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Thank you all! Most of all for your prayers and your love for our family! We are so excited!
51 days till we are off!!!