Thursday, February 24, 2011

Last Day in Cite Soleil, 5 Murals Done!

Today was an amazing day. This morning we got to visit St. Joseph’s Home in Port-au-Prince. It is a home that was built 25 years ago for boys off the streets. So neat to be there, hear the vision, meet the boys, and hear about the journey they have walked through. A man gave us a tour, 26 now, came to the home at 6 as a restavek. (In Creole it means, “stay with” it is child slavery) He spoke about his journey to St. Joseph’s and his journey and upbringing at the home. He spoke passionately about giving back to his people, his fellow brothers, the home, and the director of the program. He told us about when the earthquake hit he was on the roof of a 7 story building that came crashing down. He was able to jump onto a tree, which saved his life because he did not go down with the rubble. Following that story he said, “The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away.” He really challenged me today. It was a blessing to hear his story, but see the power of Christ in his life, the strength of the human spirit, and the power of prayer. I left encouraged and feeling grateful for the opportunity to walk in and out of the home.

I asked him how the home got started and he told me that is started 25 years ago with a man named Michael who had a calling to start a home for street boys. He moved to Haiti with 1,000.00 and started with just five boys living in a home with him. 25 years later they run a home for street boys, a school for the disabled, a bakery/coffee house that employees mothers, and a school. So neat to see the fruit of labor and the Lord’s blessings. It was also encouraging as Caitlin and I have felt the calling of starting a home for street boys. It was a beautiful gift to be able to walk through the home today and meet some of the men that grew up at the home, look at their artwork, hear their stories, and see how this home and family brought life and joy into their lives.

Headed into Cite Soleil and spent the morning finishing the last three murals. My sister knows how to work it out. She busted out three of the five murals today. I was amazed by her spirit and gift today. She kept a smile up to the last minute. We even got to paint the outside of a man’s house, why not? Hahaha.

I got to play a little soccer today, enjoyed it until the ball bounced into the canal of sludge sewer. I watched the children descend into the canal to retrieve the ball with their feet. The blanc (me) almost lost my breakfast. I could not stop laughing. I wanted to tell the kids to leave the ball, but they just kept at it. By the end of the mission we had three children in the canal trying to get the ball. They finally got it out and it was covered in sludge. That is when I took my half time break and never returned. No thank you, I like soccer, but not that much. I could foresee myself being in a position to head the ball or take a ball to the face…nope.

Good day, greatful for completing all the murals, thankful for our safety, thankful for the many blessings that people poured on us, thankful for the opportunity to know Haiti’s people and children. Leaving encouraged and blessed and ready for God to expand our borders. One, two, three…go!