Two weeks ago, I went on a mission trip to Haiti with thirteen other missionaries, most of whom I live with here at Covecrest. It was an incredibly blessed trip from start to finish! As I started writing this blog, I was listening to a song written by Michael W. Smith shortly after the earthquake last January. It’s called “Come Together Now,” and there are a few lines that really describe the great things God did during our week in Haiti…
“Say a prayer that change will come…”
We landed in Port au Prince and then had a five-hour drive to the orphanage we’d be staying at for the week. For the first hour or so, we drove through the city, where the sights we saw were almost indescribable: thousands and thousands of people are still living in tents – over a year after the earthquake. Can you imagine living in a tent for a year? People were homeless and hungry, and begging, and yet, God was right there in the midst of them. New houses had been built and others were under construction. Signs could be seen thanking Jesus and praising God. The poverty was incredible, but the hope was there to be seen if you were looking for it. As I sat in the truck silently taking it all in, I remember putting my hand up to the side of the truck – the furthest I could reach out to the people – and just praying for them. I wanted to do more for them, but that was not what God had planned, and so I prayed. I knew God was present fully in that moment as I thanked Him for all He has already done for the people of Haiti, and then asked in faith that He would increase their hope and continue to provide for them. Praise God for His providence!
“We will fight for the children who are hurting…”
In Haiti, we worked with an awesome Catholic organization called Movin’ With The Spirit (MWTS). Shortly before the earthquake, they built an orphanage, and they are working towards building a chapel, a school, and a health clinic. There are currently eleven children living at the orphanage, and it was such a blessing to love and serve them throughout the week. God has already fought hard for these children of His in bringing them to MWTS. Many of them have heart-wrenching stories of losing their parents in the earthquake and/or heartbreaking family histories, but God has provided a new, loving home for them. We were able to bring them joy by building a swing set and a sandbox, yet it became obvious that their greatest desire was our love, and so that is what we strived to give them. We played with them, danced with them, hugged them often, and held them – all while only being able to speak a few words of their language. I struggled with that especially at the beginning of the week because I longed to have even a very basic conversation with them, but it was amazing to see all the ways that love transcended the language barrier, and by God’s grace, we were able to love without words.
“Stand as one and come together now…”
During our mission, the Haitian people were an incredible witness to us as well! I don’t think we ever did anything without a Haitian coming to work alongside us. From the swing set to shoveling dirt or moving rocks to loving the children, the adults of the community were right there with us, and the children were always eager to help us, too. It was such a gift to not only serve the people of Haiti, but to serve God with them, and the love we received from each person in return was incredible! Praise God for all the ways He worked throughout our week in Haiti!