‘”My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.”
So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong.’
–2 Corinthians 12:9-10
Besides our ministry in our community, we were able to do a couple of unique things that were so awesome! On Wednesday, we had the opportunity to go buy and deliver mattresses to an orphanage, as a result of a generous donation. So, we spent four hours driving around Port-au-Prince in our three vehicle caravan, finding places to get mattresses (no Wal-Mart in Haiti), and then delivering them to the Son of God Orphanage in Carrefour. We got quite a tour of Port-au-Prince as we did this…
And we got to see some beautiful people…
We got to hang out with the children at the orphanage for about 15-20 minutes after delivering the much needed mattresses…and we didn’t want to leave them behind.
Friday was a similar experience. Our team split into three groups and we went to deliver all the supplies that had been collected and donated (TONS of stuff) to three pastors and two orphanages. My group went to an orphanage in Leogane run by the Fleury Foundation that was only 10 miles from the epicenter of the quake in January. The building was decimated, but not a single child was lost! God worked a miracle, and it was through a baby boy named Charlie…
Charlie was left on the steps of the orphanage before the quake (I can’t remember how long beforehand). They normally don’t take children this young at this orphanage, but decided to keep him. The afternoon of the quake, all the children were outside with a nurse who had come in to teach the children how to take care of their new baby brother. Absolutely amazing…only one life was lost, and that was a housemother who went in to get two girls, and when the building collapsed, her body shielded the two girls and saved their lives. God is amazing…
“Those who shut their ears to the cries of the poor will be ignored in their own time of need.” –Proverbs 21:13
We went to the boy’s camp first, and discovered that they were out of food…so we went to the market and bought food for them (this was not part of our “plan”, but as I said before, the trip was about the leading of the Spirit, not our plans). I really wanted to take these precious boys home!
“Blessed are those who are generous, because they feed the poor.” –Proverbs 22:9
Before the earthquake, there were 380,000 orphans in Haiti (the term orphan in this case doesn’t necessarily mean that their parents are dead–many are just abandoned)…
“Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.” –James 1:27
A man came to know the Lord this week, and needed an English Bible rather than Creole, because he spent many years in the U.S. and speaks English better than Creole. So I gave him mine. No hesitation. This week I realized that I am rich…I may not have a job, I may feel poor, but I am rich…and I have 4-5 Bibles of my own, and this man had none…
Our team was able to prayerfully decide how to bless our community with a budget of $2,000, and we decided to give rice and beans to the Pastor to distribute, as well as to buy wood and other roofing supplies so that they could put a roof on their cinder-block and tarp church. The food was delivered under the cover of darkness (we felt like it was a mafia deal, LOL) for safety reasons, and the building supplies were delivered to the church to their complete surprise. It was SO awesome to be able to give to them! They only had two tarps covering their church when we came that week, and we added more to that (picture below) before deciding to give them the supplies to build a real roof.
Friday night, Pastor Theodore’s church wanted to have a “thank you” service for us…and it was so amazing. They worshiped, a choir sang for us, they prayed for us, and a few of us shared how this week had impacted us. The love between believers is astounding, and surpasses even language barriers! It was so hard to say goodbye…
My life has been changed by this week, in ways that I probably don’t even realize yet. We experienced so much, saw so much…
The song by Sara Groves, “I Saw What I Saw” has even more meaning now…
I saw what I saw and I can’t forget it
I heard what I heard and I can’t go back
I know what I know and I can’t deny it
Something on the road, cut me to the soul
Your pain has changed me
your dream inspires
your face a memory
your hope a fire
your courage asks me what I’m afraid of
(what I am made of)
and what I know of love
So, there you go. A brief glimpse into my experience in Haiti. I’m sure this won’t be the last time I write about Haiti…but for now, until I get back from Brazil, here’s a little bit about my trip.
Haiti is a country filled with joy, hope, love, determination, and peace…despite the media’s portrayal. And I am encouraged, inspired, and ready to advocate for them!
Please pray about how you can help the people of Haiti. My prayer is that the stories/images/testimonies from my team will inspire people to action. You can SPONSOR children through World Vision, Compassion International, etc. You can GO to Haiti through several organizations (I recommend Adventures in Missions). You can DONATE to organizations that are serving down there (there are numerous, just make sure they are legitimate organizations). And you can PRAY. But please don’t ignore these images and stories…allow God to speak to your heart and change you from the inside out!