This month marks the 20th anniversary of Mission of Hope. It was in October 1998 that Vanessa and I packed our bags and moved to Haiti to join the work that God was already doing there. Recently the team asked us what we had learned over the past 20 years, and that really got me thinking. Ephesians 3:20-21 is the verse that I keep going back to as I reflect on all that God has done.
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.
– Ephesians 3:20-21
Over the past 20 years we have been blessed to watch God do “immeasurably more” than we could have ever fathomed. There are many things Vanessa and I have learned over the past 20 years, but I’d like to start with this:
Be faithful with today, and let God take care of tomorrow.
If you had told me 20 years ago all the things that would happen in the coming years, I wouldn’t have believed you. When Vanessa and I first went to Haiti, we weren’t thinking about providing medical care to 71,500 patients—we were thinking about Baby Guerline who had died in her father’s arms from malnutrition. We weren’t thinking about educating 11,700 kids in 41 schools—we were thinking about one small schoolhouse with 230 kids. We weren’t thinking about providing 91,000 meals to students each day or a 35,000 square foot warehouse stacked with meals—we were trying to figure out how to keep our students from fainting from hunger during class.
In each case God asked us to simply be faithful with that day, that need that was in front of us. Naturally we wanted to try and figure out the how and the who. “How would we pay for this?” “How would we find the time?” “Who would God send to help?” In every instance, God simply asked us to be faithful with that day and allow Him to take care of the how and the who of tomorrow.
What is God asking you to be faithful with today? Who has He put in your life that He has shown you has a need? How has God resourced you to meet that need? With a surrendered heart and a willingness to be faithful with today, God will move through us to do “immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine.”
About the Author: Brad Johnson
Brad is the President of Mission of Hope. He attended Huntington University as a student athlete and graduated in 1993 with a B.S. in Educational Ministries with a Business Emphasis. While at Huntington, he broke school records in Track and Field, won the National Championship, and was awarded the prestigious Wheeler Award, given to the National Track and Field Male Athlete of the Year for outstanding character, athletic achievement, and campus leadership by the NCCAA. Upon graduation, Brad joined Youth for Christ as the Director of Campus Life at Carroll High School in Fort Wayne, IN, where he developed his passion for coaching and mentoring young leaders.
Brad grew up going to Haiti each year to serve on week-long mission trips. After experiencing the tragic loss of a baby girl in a village due to malnutrition, in 1998, he and his wife Vanessa moved to Haiti to participate in God’s vision of bringing life transformation to every man, woman, and child. For 15 years, Brad directly oversaw all strategic and operational aspects of Mission of Hope, while mentoring and grooming young Haitian leaders to step into key leadership roles. In 2008, the Huntington University Alumni Association awarded him the Distinguished Alumni Citation in recognition of mission work and commitment to impacting the world for Christ. Today, Brad and his wife Vanessa live in Lago Vista, TX and have four children: JD, Georgie, Beau, and Jaima.