Sunday, August 19, 2012

Learning to be an artist!
Ryna hanging with the trouble makers...they gave us a run for our goudes.
Paloulou, one of our teachers that worker with the children to make jewelery.
Sewing it out!
Mario and W getting into the skit of the day, The Good Samaritan
Went to visit a town up in the mountains, these children were waiting to greet us!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

The Last Day...

Again I observed all the oppression that takes place in our world. I saw the tears of the oppressed, with no one to comfort them. The oppressors have great power, and the victims are helpless. ~ Well, this morning started off different than others. We are sitting here waiting on our ride and a call from the man that we have been working with. Last night there was some cross fire in the area that we are working in and a little girl got shot and died. We got to talking on the phone this morning and he said, “She was in your camp; she was 12” This scripture continues to come to my heart over and over again. The great oppressor…. and the tears of the oppressed. See oppression coming from all sides in this place. Makes you frustrated, makes you sad, makes you exhausted, makes you desire to go deeper. Have been thinking more and more about discipleship and the great need to speak the power of God into this world, in Cite Soleil, specifically to the boys. Saw one of the guys that was involved sipping a beer in the streets the following day. The justice system does not exist. A 12 year old died, the man drank a beer in the streets, and the cops never came around. Thought about the great leader this man could have been….I look at the 5 year old boys here and think about what great leaders they can be with the correct leadership and discipliceship….. See a great need of rising up boys to be men that want to be leaders of change, leaders for Christ, leaders to fight for the oppressed, leaders to fight for their own people. This is happening all around the world. I think of Dorchester, MA where I am currently living. We are loosing children monthly to gun/gang violence. What makes the difference? Seeing more and more that the difference is discipleship and working alongside them through the good, the bad, and the ugly. The work isn’t pretty, it is often ugly, and often comes with getting burned out, fried, exhausted, and getting burned by people. Without the love of Christ breaking through in these places, what can be the lasting change? Do we weep for the things that make God’s heart break? And when we weep, why do we weep….how is it the spirit of God moving us to break for the things that break his heart? Nehemiah wept for the broken walls of Jerusalem, he wept for the people in exile…what makes our hearts, your heart weep? Haiti makes my heart weep. The oppression against the children makes my heart weep The day started off hard and I thought it would continue in that way. We got to Cite Soleil and some of the men that were working for us were a bit frustrated because other men wanted to work to. There was one specific man that just kept yelling. I finally laughed at him and gave him a hug. Asked if he was angry with me and made a comment that written on his shirt was the phrase, “Still Angry.” I translated it to him and we laughed, he quickly became my best friend. Favorite part of the day was hanging with my little kiddo that has become my favorite. We share the same joy. He is 4, I am 29 but we seem to laugh at the same things, he mimics my dancing, and constantly is bringing me things, by things, I mean garbage. Yesterday he brought me a doll that had a couple of chunks of hair. About ten minutes after that he brought me the doll and a clump of weave hair. I could not help but laugh. We tied the weave hair up on the doll and called it a day. At the end of the day I got a chance to observe him playing in the streets. He was playing in the garbage, standing in the garbage cannel. Just made my heart sad. The end of the day we visited another zone that wants to work with us. Twenty of us sat on the bridge talking about the need of the community. As we sat on the bridge that covered the cannel of the garbage I couldn’t help but think about the wind blowing the fumes and nastiness of the garbage in my face. Took a breath and realized that this is there life. They don’t get to leave this place, they don’t get to know the comfort of the next meal, they don’t get to feel the peace of knowing they can provide for their children, they don’t get to know that their children will be safe walking in the streets, they don’t get to take a nice shower, they don’t get to….the list goes on and on. I asked them what was the first thing they needed. It was simple…they wanted a little wall put around the sewer wall so the children wouldn’t fall in it. That is what they want. Not a food, not a job, they want a wall to surround the sewer cannel so they children don’t fall in or play in it. Feel guilty this morning, feeling sad this morning, feeling exhausted, don’t know if I am ready for the land of the plenty yet. Don’t know if I am ready to see wealth and having the chance to have a choice…but we are done and we are healthy. Thank you all for everything you have done to support us, you have truly blessed our hearts, the people of Haiti, Cite Soleil…we could not do it without you all. Love you all and continue to be so grateful that you are walking in this journey with us. Will be posting more pics on our blog when I get home….we are home Friday. Ricky leaves today…Ryna, Caitlin and I are out on Friday. Pray for our travels and planes. Pray for our hearts as I know the transition is always harder going from Haiti to America. Until next time…may his glory continue to shine and be the light that breaks through in this world.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

More to Come...

Last day we go. Wanted to post some pictures of the work that was happening in the community and some of our favorite shots over the last couple of days. More to come in the next couple of you all. Thank you for your prayers. Keep praying for the last day. Ricky heading home on Tuesday and the rest of our time here. Love you all.
First day of "slinging paint" as my sister calls it! Looking good, we are tired, but holding strong!
Ryna and one of the kiddos up North.
This little boy was my favorite. Brought up this broken piece of a radio with a dirty ear piece. Everyone told him it was garbage. I decided to pretend I heard music and listened to it with him. He laughed. Lord, love this little kiddo. He shares the same joy I share. Love him!
Snapped this photo while Caitlin was painting. He was watching her paint. Love the image.
Ryna learned the word for "pop your collars" She was practicing he word while borrowing the child's vest and acting it out. hahaha

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

5 Weeks Done….and 10 More to GO…Roll Out

We serve a beautiful Lord. Today in church I almost started to cry. Just got to thinking how much I love this place, in the midst of it being exhausting, I love it, I love the people, I love how God moves her, I love the eyes of the children, the joy of their hearts, I love the beauty of the mountains, I love the beauty of a smile through stories of hardship. Today the church was singing and for a moment I closed my eyes to take it in. I opened my eyes to see a woman with outstretched arms, lifted high, standing at the front of the church. Such a beautiful sight. In the midst of great poverty, hardship, her arms were stretched open to the sky. Such a neat testimony…had to just watch her. It humbled me. I love seeing that faith. It is total dependence on the Lord. As the offering plate gets past around you watch people that walk through poverty put money in the plate…it is humbling, it is challenging, it is a struggle in my heart. How quickly I become comfortable in America? How quickly to I adjust to America and depend more on my mother, a friend vs depending on God? As I watched that woman this morning I wanted to weep for a place that I will miss, for the beauty of their faith, for the lack of my faith. This place will either make or break you…. Sunday is supposed to be the day of rest, but today was far from that. We are getting ready to take off in a day and trying to get thigns wrapped up here and everyone wants to sit down and talk. My Creole is hurting because I am so tired, but been holding it together. Ryna’s Creole is amazing and has been a gift from God. When I miss something, which I always do, she gets it. Two are better than one, always. Today we had an exposition for the community to come see what the children did from camp. SO neat to watch the whole church file into the school to see what the children had created in camp. Made me smile to see the ownership they took over their work. Lunch with the pastors, they always have 20,000 more ideas for next year…I laughed. I told them I haven’t even closed this year. Had lunch together and recapped on the camp, nice to keep the connection and invest in the relationships with them. After we started to hike for the hills to meet a friend. I got asked to be a godmother…hahah, so I was hiking into the hills to meet the child that I will see maybe once a year. We got about ½ mile out and it started to rain, Ryna and I took off in a run up hills. Lord, I haven’t done that in months. About 5 minutes from home both my sandals break….barefoot I take off for the house and the whole time I am praying that I don’t get hook worm..hahaha, a worm that I think gets into your body through your feet. Dodging the cow dung, the horse dung…O lord…cover my body. O the moments in Haiti. We are well….off for an adventure tomorrow night. We have to get the bus at 3 in the morning, so we are taking motorcycles at 1 in the morning into Port-De-Paix to get the bus. Pack of three motos…1 in the morning…sounds like a crazy adventure that I need you all to be praying over. Ma, this blog is for you. I am posting it after we are safe and sound….what a night. Ma, I was waiting to post it because I didn’t wait to freak you out. Our night, motorcycles show up late. Middle of the night, a pack of three motorcycles driving down a dirt road in the middle of Haiti. Can’t say I trusted our driver, kept telling him to slow down, but Ryna and I had some good laughs. All the men seemed to be a.o.k with the drive, laughing and smiling, Ryna and I joked about becoming nuns because we were irritated with men at that moment in the morning..hahaha. They were late, driving like idiots, and well…guess that was enough to make me think that becoming a nun at that moment would be good. Got to the bus station at 230, and on the bus to sweat out my dinner from last night. It was so hot. So hot…by so hot, I mean people crammed in a school bus, with no circulation of wind, and sitting next to big Ricky. Those buses are not designed for people like Ricky, he was a trooper. Think I would have complained the whole time, but he kept saying he was ok. Then we were off…rollocoaster. Literally a rollcoaster. We were told that it is a bus, but on the frame of an 18 wheeler, with tired from an 18 wheeler, so that the bus can sustain the road. We are safe and laughing so much. Caitlin is here tonight, our two Haitian brothers are with us and we are just laughing, so good. Might be one of my favorite memories on this trip. Tonight we ate dinner together, felt like a big ole family. Made me smile. We are safe and thankful to have a bed and a room with AC. AC...yes! Some pictures of camp up North. The children were learning different skills in the community. We hired teachers to teach them.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Nights Adventures in Passe Cataboise…and A Good Laugh by My Brother….

Ryna and I decided to head down to the bakery for the third time tonight to try and get bread for the morning, since that has become our diet. We come to the bakery and they are out, but we quickly come to find out that the baker’s children are heading up to where they make the bread to bring some down to the place they sell it. So we are off, Ryna and I throw a kid on our back and we are off for a little night adventure. Love those moments. They are random, but they are moments that you get to know people more, see their lifestyles, and laugh together. We find the father and four of his workers, working away. The brick oven is blazing in the background. The only two things that light the room are the oven and one oil lamp. Just night to watch unfold. Ryna somehow manages to carry a load of bread back to the store and once again we are off….got out bread, so hot….had to break into it on the way home. Love little adventures…week FIVE tomorrow…this is the most that we have ever done. As I like to say, “A whole notha level” here we come…we are tired, but we are holding fast. Tonight I got an email from my brother….had to laugh and some might find this inappropriate, but it made me laugh and need the laugh. He read the blog about our Thursday night with the 8 people vomiting and seizing in the hospital….his response was, “Keep kicking Satan in the nuts.” Hahaha, thanks brother for the support, it was actually just what I needed…sometimes you need a good laugh here. It is what gets you through the day when things seem to look so difficult or exhausting, you laugh. So thanks my brother for making me laugh. Tomorrow I head into get Ricky, he is bringing the energy for the last week. The children will love him, crawl on him…good to get some more hands pouring into the people. Grateful for his heart to serve. Keep praying for us…we have 17 days left and from prior trips I have learned that it is the last weeks that Satan loves to put in a bigger fight. The nurse that has been living here for three months, heads home next Tuesday and she just found out today that she had Dungae. It is a form of malaria. She is doing ok, but just see Satan trying to put his foot in her door. Just pray for her, our team, the last week of camp, Caitlin and her time painting, pray for the rest of the trip that God would reveal, expose more of his plan in Haiti. Love you all…thanks for following, praying, and supporting us.