Showing posts from June, 2011

I Left My Heart In Haiti

When I say I left my heart in Haiti, I really did. It's funny how one small thing can change your life forever. That was what it was like for me on our last day in Haiti. We were supposed to go to one more orphanage on our way to the airport. Traveling through Port-au-Prince, however, we hit lots of standstill traffic. I can admit that I was tired and my energy level was pretty low. I remember thinking....if we don't have time to go to the last orphanage than that is okay with me.
I sit here now thinking about the wonderful opportunity I would have missed out on simply by being tired. From the moment I stepped off the bus, this little girl grabbed my hand and stood hugging me. I discovered quickly that regardless the language barrier, you could determine pretty quickly the personality of the children. Most of them were excited, full of energy, funny, TROUBLE =), kind. This little girl had such a sweet heart. She was so loving, calm, and patient when other kids were…

Mighty to Save

Of all the things I can say about Haiti, nothing comes close to the heart of the children. Their eyes gleamed of INNOCENCE, HOPE, and PURE JOY. I would say that most of our time was spent with children, whether it was at the work site or the orphanage. The labor work of the trip was spent building a school/church. You can see that right now they are studying each day under a tent....a loud (open classrooms side by side), distracting (from the workers), dirty, hot tent. I think back to my years of teaching and wonder what my professors would say about the ability to retain information in this type of setting. When the children would have a break during school, we would get the opportunity to play with them. I have mentioned that language is, obviously, a barrier, but it is amazing how quickly those walls are taken down in things as simple as a smile, a high five, a fist bump, a hug. They loved our presence among them and pulled us immediately into hand slap games, jump rope, socc…

Too Close for Comfort

Don't let these smiling, happy faces fool you! While we were both smiling and happy, it was one of relief rather than excitement! We planned for Cholera. We planned for Malaria. We planned for Typhoid. We planned for Hepatitis A and B. We planned for stomach issues, what clothes to pack, making sure we had plenty of germX. But there are just some things you cannot plan for!
It just wouldn't be fitting to talk about Haiti and all the wonderful things we've witnessed without giving a shout out to our near death experience....or maybe I should say "surviving" our near death experience.We traveled by school bus everywhere. On Sunday, we went up a very muddy, rocky road to get to the church on the mountain. I was actually taking a picture, blurry as it may be, of all of the trash that was just piled and piled over this cliff. I had no idea that within minutes it could have been the site our potential death! Ok, that may be a little exaggerated, but it was to…

Worship: Together Is Better!

Our first full day in Haiti was Sunday. The compound where we were staying was a part of a big church with many members. We were not able to attend the entire church service, as they are usually 2-3 hours long in Haiti, however we did get to experience a small piece of it. I have witnessed poverty before, but never in such extremities. It's everywhere, all encompassing....but in the midst of it is a sense of pride that I have never seen. The Haitians have an appreciation, not only for church, but for coming and worshiping God that is rare.I watched as hundreds of men, women, and children came to church dressed in their Sunday best. All of the men were in suits, and no matter the heat, they did not remove their coats. The women were all in fancy dresses as well as the children. From the outside looking in, you would not know they were in such meager conditions. What impacted me the most, however, was gazing out of our bedroom window (remember....the open air rooms=) ) and w…

Holy Humidity

Humbled is a word that is going to be making its appearance in EVERY one of my blog posts, but I'm not going to pretend that fell short of appearances! I....yes me....was the one who actually brought a hair dryer on this trip! Well was a cruel joke. The humidity was so bad that drying actually made it worse! And makeup, well, other than a little around the eyes, the rest of it just made my face "gleam" with sweat even more! So....natural was my best look down in Haiti. Yes....I can shamefully admit that it took me a day or two to come to terms with this fact.....but again, I was humbled! God didn't stop short of breaking me of all of my dependencies in Haiti....and I couldn't be more thankful for that! Oh...and hats! I was thankful for hats!!!!

Haiti: First Impressions

Wow. As I mentioned this on our Watson Warriors blog, it is almost amusing reading my "pre-trip" posts. I honesty just had no idea. God did provide an opportunity...a huge one.....but I think it changed me more than I ever could have imagined. So much encompassed this trip that it is simply too difficult to summarize all that I experienced in one sitting. So, I will probably be blogging a lot this week trying to share the different aspects of our trip. Stay Tuned!!!
Haiti....First Impressions

I remember the thoughts going through my head when we began flying into Haiti. Even from the plane you could see the poverished state of this country: dirty water flowing into the oceans, small cement huts, tents, trash. It in itself began to stir the emotion of fear before ever getting off the plane. The airport did not settle that feeling. When we got off the plane we were taken by bus to what can only be described as a warehouse (aka Customs). It was definitely unlike anythin…

An Opportunity

Over the past few months, I have prayed many prayers.....for "time" with God, for solitude, for perspective on what really matters in life, for finding who God made me to really be, for daily strength, for help, for ways to reach out to others, for friendships, for my faith to grow. In so many ways I keep turning my eyes to God and waiting for Him to "zap" me with all of these things. Wouldn't it be nice if it was just that simple? But what I am realizing is that God has and is still answering my giving me an opportunity. With MUCH hesitation and MUCH resistance, God has provided the fuel, the funds, and the fellowship to take me to Haiti. I leave in a few short days for an adventure I have never dared to take. My heart is as excited as it is nervous. Excited for the risk.....having to rely on complete faith that everything will go smoothy. Excited about spending a week totally and completely free of the trivial things of this world. Excit…

Good Songs....

Two songs that have been stuck in my head......good lines!
"You lift me up when I am weak
Your arms wrap around me
Your love catches I’m letting go.
You lift me up when I can’t see
Your heart is all that I need
Your love carries I’m letting go."
~"Lift Me Up" The Afters
"I am the thorn in your crown
But You love me anyway
I am the sweat from Your brow
But You love me anyway
I am the nail in Your wrist
But You love me anyway
I am Judas' kiss
But You love me anyway
See now I am the man who yelled out from the crowd
For Your blood to be spilled on this earth shaking ground
Yes then I turned away with a smile on my face
With this sin in my heart, tried to bury Your grace
And then alone in the night I still call out for You
So ashamed of my life, my life, my life."
~"Love Me Anyway" Sidewalk Prophets