Wednesday, July 22, 2015

“How can you think about heaven, when you can’t eat today?”

Haiti always has moments where you hear pieces of the rawness to life. The week has been going well! The kids are full of energy and joy. I have made a “new friend.” One of the youth that has been attending the afternoon workshops has asked, “If he could be in my friend group.” I had to chuckle, “Sure buddy!” He was the same boy that asked if he could come to my wedding in October. He is precious. Said he is making me earrings for my wedding day…have at it buddy! Talks my ear off. He asks some really random questions, but it is fun to sit with him and chat and laugh. The children love that I am getting married! They want to come in my suitcase home so they can go. I told them that the police would have a big problem with me! We have laugher and enjoyed the presence of JOY in the church. I have had a lot of moments. Haiti often gives you moments! Some moments where you loose it with laughter, some moments where your heart aches, moments where you just need to be still. The rawness of Cite Soleil came from seeing three different men at three different times carrying BIG guns like it was part of life. Gangs have been going back and forth. Today the community communicated to me, “That you will see that, its war.” It’s frustrating. It doesn’t make sense. It’s the weirdest sight to watch a man holding an AK47 walk past you while you are sitting with a group of children on the front stoop of a church and the children pay him no mind. It’s normal! The rawness of Cite Soleil. Moment where my heart ached that children have to call that “normal.” Moment where I laughed….Waiting in an alley for the 100 pate (food) we ordered for camp. A Haitian child was giving me a joke and asking me what language I spoke. I told him English, to which I asked him what language he spoke. To which he stated, “The language of a GOAT.” OOOO, this should be good! Leah enters the joke by saying, I speak goat as well, to which I begin to speak in goat sounds. Classic, as he responds in goat sounds. Sounds stupid, right? OOO, but we did this for five minutes and had about 10 deep laughing with us! I love those moments, laughter and being ridiculous with adults and children. Haitians have such a great sense of humor, fun to sit with them in the jokes! Tonight I got to sit with my good friend Louvenet. I met him the year I lived here, in 2007. He was one of the first children that I came to know and we began to learn English and Creole together. Sat with him for awhile tonight to talk about life in Haiti, his life, my life, catch up! He is 21 now. He talked about how “hard” it is up North because they don’t find rain and the drought is so bad. Worst he has ever seen. Louvenet loves Jesus with all his heart, maybe more than me. Tonight as we were talking he said, “Its hard to think about Heaven, when you can’t eat today.” We sat in that statement for awhile. What is hunger? Have I ever really known hunger? Nope! When hunger consumes you how it takes your mind off of what is pure and lovely, heaven. I told him I know I don’t really understand that statement because I have never had that kind of hunger. He said, “It has to be Haitians helping Haitians, but how? I have no doors to knock on.” So frustrating to be in that conversation with him because I look at a gifted man who could blow it up for his community, for Jesus, for his family, and then I see him in Haiti and how the great struggle of this country can consume his being. It makes my heart ache. Louvenet told me tonight in the politest way possible that I will never get it. It was humbling and I agree. I can be a presence in this country, be a listener, be a bridge, be a light, be a piece to the community, but I will never get the magnitude of what it means to worship through the struggle in this country.