Thursday, July 19, 2018

Haiti - Day 3

Friday, July 6 was our third day in Haiti.  We got up early to a lovely breakfast of eggs that could burn your lips off your face (ok, not really, but they were seriously spicy) and delicious Haitian bread with Nutella...yes, Nutella for breakfast in Haiti, it's a good thing.   Today was the best day of the trip....and the beginning of the worst.

We headed back to the church yard to work with the boys from Revelator.  This would be our third and final session on volleyball where we taught them how to spike, and then have a scrimmage between the boys and our team.   Again the natural athletic ability of these young men was really impressive.     During the scrimmage, our team had a few "issues"....and at one point one of our gals yelled out "Pastor Ray did NOT send us all the way to Haiti to lose this game!"   It was too funny, and we held on to win by a pretty impressive amount.

Once our volleyball session was over, we went into the church to have our third teaching on how to lead others to Christ.   Once the teaching was finished, we had the boys practice with each other, they were very shy and obviously uncomfortable with this.   However, in the process two of the boys actually accepted Christ, praise God!
When we finished here, we loaded up our team and the boys from Revelator and traveled to the Kkottognae Haiti village.   The village is  predominantly an elderly village, but there are also ill/handicapped children, and mentally ill men and women housed there.   When we visited, there were 281 residents.    We watched a gut and heart wrenching video showing where some of the people came from and where they are now after being touched by God's love through man's hands.

We toured the facility, and spent a lot of time in the children's ward.    Those shy boys from earlier in the day, were no longer shy.   They entered the children's ward and the love of God poured out of them as they swept children into their arms, laid hands on babies and prayed with fire and authority.

We moved to another part of the facility and did songs with roughly 100 of the elderly folks and did teaching on salvation, and a skit about how Jesus leaves the 99 and goes looking for the lost sheep.   Isn't this the happiest little lost sheep ever?
Lastly, we told the people we wanted to pray with them.   Our team didn't have to prod the boys from Revelator, they just took off, laying hands on people, praying for healing and they led two elderly people to Christ!

The time at the village was the most inspiring and beautiful part of our trip.  We got to see the fruit of what we taught the boys as they just took off praying and being available for God to use.   This two hour (give or take) window of time ranks at the top of my list of great life experiences.

When we left the village, we took the boys out to lunch with us and we sat and reflected over what we'd seen and experienced during the day.   The "little lost sheep" in the photo above (he has cerebral palsy and a speech impediment) said that his take away from the day, was that he realized "Nobody is a nothing."   Cue the water works from our whole team.

While we were still reflecting, the interpreter whispered something in our leader's ear, and the leader quickly announced we needed to leave.  His wife (she's a talker) said she needed just 5 more minutes, and he firmly said "NOW".   I've been around long enough to know that this was the mark of something serious, so we quickly loaded our team and the boys and left for the compound we were staying at.

One wrong turn caused us to have to back up a narrow street and turn around when we found ourselves  going in the opposite direction of the traffic.   Then we got stuck behind a broken down water truck.   The boys from the home, and some of our younger guys quickly jumped into action to push the truck and get it going and we were again on the move.

Then we made the turn onto the main road.   Rioters had already started to block the roads with tires.   To our left men with masks were beginning to pour gasoline in the tires while another man came along and set fire to the tires.   There was just enough space on the far right side for our vehicle to squeeze by and shoot out onto the road before the road was totally blocked.   Had we been 60 seconds later, we'd have been trapped on the wrong side of the fires and rioting.

Our two vehicles were the only ones on the road at this point.  We were able to get back to our compound and the boys safely made it to their compound.      Back behind out concrete wall, we got word that the State Department was ordering all U.S. citizens to shelter in place, we were under Level 4 alert, which means Do Not Travel.

Our evening was spent preparing for the next day's activities and waiting to see what the day would bring.   We could hear gunshots, and see and smell smoke from the fires as we went about our evening devotion and reflection time as a team.

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  1. Oh. My. Goodness! What a sudden turn of events! Praise God for salvations!

  2. What a terribly scary afternoon and evening. What a blessing that you were able to be with your daughter and get safely back to the compound. The special needs village sounds wonderful and the first two days were great.
    Blessings, Dawn

  3. Wow! I can see how it was your favorite day... and quickly turned to he beginning of the worst. So thankful you are all able to get safely back and away from the riots.


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