Sarah Heinz | Solid Rock

Sarah Heinz | Solid Rock

Being a Bridge

When people ask me about my job, I often describe it as being a bridge. That phrase is even in my job description: “serve as a bridge between team members and the Dominicans.” One definition of bridge is to “make a difference between two groups smaller or less significant.” That is definitely what the American SRI missionaries living in the DR try to do, and why it is so important for us to work closely with our Dominican partners. We are familiar with life and culture in the US, and it’s necessary for us to live in San Juan with the people we serve, learning their culture and ways so that we, as a ministry, can be helpful.

Being a bridge is a privilege. The work that I get to be a part of, all the incredible people I get to meet (both Dominican and American), the empathy I now have for people living in second culture and trying to communicate in another language…for all of this (and so much more) I am so grateful. But I wouldn’t be telling the whole truth if I said it’s always easy being a bridge. Being a bridge doesn’t always feel good when you have to manage people’s expectations and sometimes explain things that you yourself don’t fully understand. It’s hard to have one foot (and half my heart) in the US, and my other foot in the DR. There are days it’s really hard to live in another country than so many people that I love.

Even though being a bridge is hard, it is ultimately worth it. Looking back on the past 3 weeks alone, if I wasn’t here there are so many sweet moments I would have missed out on. If I wasn’t here, I would have missed out on the barrio and surgical week with the team from Roanoke, Virginia. I wouldn’t have seen all the people helped through the surgeries provided by the pediatric orthopedic surgeon and the podiatrist that came…broken bones that are now healing properly, ligaments lengthened so a 9-year-old can walk for the first time in his life…life changing surgeries.

If I wasn’t here, I wouldn’t have been able to see the impact the week of service here had on the nursing students from Indiana, nor would I have sang worship songs on the way to a barrio clinic with the team from Concord, North Carolina this past week. If I wasn’t here there are so many people whom I call friend, and some even family, that I wouldn’t even know if I didn’t live here.

Living here has changed me. Being a bridge has stretched me and grown me. Being removed from my comfort zone has given me the space to become more of the person God has called me to be, more reliant on Him and His plan for my life.

I am grateful I get to be a SRI bridge. Even on the hard days when it doesn’t feel so good I know God has me here for a reason, and He is always quick to give me a reminder of that.

Prayer requests:

  • Safe travels to the States for Easter
  • Upcoming ministry season
  • Spanish
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