Saturday, April 6, 2019
"May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit". Romans 15:3
Kevyen Aucoin said, "Today I choose life. Every morning when I wake up I can choose joy, happiness, negativity, pain... To feel the freedom that comes from being able to continue to make mistakes and choices- today I choose to feel life, not to deny my humanity but embrace it."
Today we choose life and joy!
Joy from the moment we awoke to find new friends have arrived and the amazing staff at Healing Haiti had once again wowed us with their culinary creations! Each morning has been full of great food and fresh squeezed juices.
After breaking our fast and enjoying inspiring conversation, we headed again to the Tap Tap. This time we were loaded down with goodies because we were heading to the Haiti Deaf Academy (HDA). We were bringing with us HDA's directors. The kids had not seen them in a while. The drive was beautiful! We saw the blue Caribbean sea. We arrived at HDA, all of us eager to meet the amazing children and the dedicated staff.
The kids were incredible--so personable and friendly. We met each one personally. We were blessed to have time to truly enjoy them. We chatted and played games and did not want to leave.
After our wonderful visit at HDA, we enjoyed a little shopping at Rosie's Boutique then pizza at Fleri. We took a tour of Fleri and saw the amazing work they do there. It was so inspiring! After a dinner of pizza and fellowship we headed back to Healing Haiti. Exhausted and dusty we left the Tap Tap, but our hearts were bursting with joy for every moment.
Radiant Life - Michigan and Minnesota
We began the day around 9:30 planning on going to deliver water, well that was changed rather quickly when we got to the fill station and one of the pumps was broken. So we just moved right along and went to Fleri Farm, all of us being from either Michigan or Minnesota we had in our heads what we were sort of expecting for a “farm” and we all were pretty surprised to what we were shown. Plantain, mango, coconut, and pomegranate trees along with various plants were everywhere. None of what we saw looked like a farm to any of us but then Kenny (the Fleri Farm general manager) showed us and told us what God’s image was for this place. He didn’t need to have a crop that sold for big money quickly or the highest tech to get the job done quick and ready, he was experimenting for the future. Putting in more work than any of us probably could imagine, he was building for the future. Not wanting to drive out the business and overtake the market for Fleri Farms crop he was talking about even having example plots that farmers could come in and see what worked and how they could grow food to support their family. I can only imagine what it will look like in the future with Kenny following God’s direction with the farm.
Then we jump to delivering water for the last time. It was something you can’t understand until you have done it.. The first time this group delivered water we didn’t know what to expect, it was new. It was one of the things we were called to do and the second time around, I think if you were to ask the team members, they would say that this time it was a lot easier. We sort of knew what to expect, and because of that we were able to just jump right in. The water truck pulls up behind the Tap Tap (I still don’t understand how in the world they drive and get the places they do in Haiti) but anyways, people anywhere from a young toddler age to someone to way older past adulthood were dragging buckets and drums and getting in a line. From there nothing stops moving until you hear Shelly start rounding us up. Whether we are filling buckets or holding children, we are doing the best we can to serve in any way possible. I cant tell you how many buckets of water I have put on children’s heads because it is simply how they get their stuff around. Let alone all the other group members, I even saw Paul carrying a bucket on his head at one point. But it truly was an experience, the way it can humble you is outstanding. The basic need for water to these people is mind blowing. Then comes the moment that the truck has emptied and we have to go. Sadly having to tell them we have to leave, not knowing if they are even understanding what we are saying you just want to help.
The last thing we did for the day was visit Dios Orphanage for Special Needs children. Having lived my life surrounded by Special Olympics, Project Unify, and helping coach Special Olympics basketball for years I had an idea what to expect and so did Brad because he has been blessed with a son that has special needs. But as for the others I don’t think they have had a whole lot of interaction with special needs children but something taken into perspective as we were unloading from the Tap Tap was that we all just jumped in. Regardless of how new it was to us. Wes, Paul, and I playing soccer with kids that were unbelievably good at it, Brandi playing tic-tac-toe or drawing with them, Mackenzie sitting down and just being with the kids, Michelle, Shelly, and Smith doing the Cupid Shuffle, Carol and Julia taking the time to just listen to the kids and let them know that they are loved, and last but definitely not least, Brad pulling a little kid around in a wheelchair with a rope connected to him while the kid yelled “Peres Noele”. We all just played, were there with them giving them something to do and some joy and excitement to have. So how do you sum up a trip that has truly can’t be put into words? I don’t know but everyday we have been serving God and breaking barriers, all while growing closer and closer as a family. It truly is amazing to just stop and see what God is able to do.