Greetings friends, family and strangers!
We officially survived our second full day in Haiti. It seems like we have been here for weeks, but my sense of time is so warped, especially after that seemingly never-ending bus ride. This morning I woke to a flock of black birds at 5:45 screeching at me. We were told the Haitian people believe they are evil and I now know why.
After a devotion by the rocking Cody “Belieber” Clawson, we headed to church for a few hours. I helped with Children’s church, where we talked about the 7 days of Creation and how God made each child and person unique. We also played games and did a few craft activities. I was amazed at how well-behaved the children are. The older ones take care of the younger ones. They didn’t fight and had incredible manners.. We kept saying, “we’re definitely not in America,” until we saw a teenager texting in church. 🙂 Some things never change.
After hanging out with the kids, we organized supplies for the week then headed to the beach! It was definitely an adventure getting there, but once we arrived, it was so worth it. It was the prettiest beach I’ve ever seen, with the softest sand and clearest water, but this is practically the Caribbean baby! It amazes me how beautiful the country is and how great it would be to live here, until I realize how impoverished the people are.
At the beach we played with the kids and just chilled. At one point I ulled out a granola bar to snack on, and like seven different Haitians immediately crowded around me. Although I don’t speak their language, I had no problem understanding how hungry they were. It broke my heart, but I couldn’t share because I didn’t have enough for everyone.
I have been completely overwhelmed by a new situation and a new culture, but I am absolutely loving it. I feel like I’m being blessed and learning more from these people than vice versa. They are continually friendly, despite their circumstances. I can’t help but think, why not me?
This week, when I get discouraged or start feeling sorry for myself, I’m reminding myself of Paul’s words. “Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in every situation to be content. I know how to be brought low and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. For I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” -Philippians 4:11-13
Pray for our strength, energy and spirit of selflessness.
Pleasant Valley Youth Team
Bonswa kate wrote a whole book i am going to just say a few things today was an amazing day for our team and i loved just hanging out at the beach and playing with the kids in the street. The language barier is not a problem for me as long as i have my smile and my joy. Looking forward to the rest of the week and what we are going to do in preskul. Please pray for me as i endure a hot week. Pray for my knee as i hurt it on the bus ride over and it hurts super bad except i know that i must endure. It is all for the kids. I love it here wish i could stay longer. The kids are very cute. Just pray for the team and the spiritual battle we are going up against here. Love and miss my family. (BTW i do not love Cody Clawson hehe)
Amore Rachel Spencer 143
After we got back from the beach we had a couple of hours of free time so some of us went outside the hotel courtyard to play with the kids who just wait outside the gate for us. There were so many cute kids there and it broke my heart to see some of their living conditions – how tattered and old their clothes were or how dirty they were. But their faces lit up with smiles as we played games together, some familiar to us and some new. We played a couple games of duck, duck, goose along with ring around the rosy. They taught us some clapping games and though it was a bit difficult to understand all the rules without speaking Creole but we caught on and played several rounds. I think that just playing with these kids and getting to know their names and ages will quickly become my favorite aspect of this trip. Hanging out with these kids reminds me what I have and how much I have to be thankful for. One boy, Nelson, sitting next to me knew a few English phrases and repeatedly told me how hungry he was right before our team headed off to have dinner. It just amazes me how happy these children can be after all they have been through in their lives. Although we came on this trip to help the Mole I think these kids will be the ones changing our lives. Bonswa everyone and please continue to pray for our team and the people of the Mole and Preskul and the work we will do the rest of this week.
Hey all! We are are doing pretty well, except for being all hot and sweaty, tired, sun-burnt,etc. normal stuff. At least normal for Haiti.
It has been an interesting couple of days. I came here expecting to help all of the people and that everything would be really easy. But it hasn’t. At least, not for me. I feel like they are changing us and influencing us more than we are they. I’m not quite sure if that is a good thing or a bad thing.
Of course, I need to remember that we shouldn’t expect to see results instantly. In fact, we may not see any results while we are here. But even if we don’t see any results, we may be planting seeds unknown by even ourselves. However, I feel something coming. I don’t know what it is yet. But it is coming, that I know for sure.
Because our God is greater, stronger, and higher than any other. He is able to do more than we can ever expect. So just pray for us, me, that we will be willing to do what He wants us to do, no matter the cost.
Thanks everybody! [oh, p.s., also pray for all of our sun-burns. :)]
Gabby Back [Youth]