JUNE 16, 2014 PRICHARDS1992 LEAVE A COMMENT
As I sit in my room and reflect on my first two weeks in St. Nicolas and my third week in total in Haiti many thoughts come to mind. The first week of intern training was great. The training stretched me emotionally and spiritually preparing me for the weeks ahead. We visited several surrounding towns and learned about the mission programs that were helping to spread the love and word of God. We also got to spend time playing and loving on many of the children living in these towns.
During the intern training we really focused and studied Ephesians 6: 10-20 which starts out by stating, “Be strong in the Lord and His mighty power.” What a powerful and precise statement. I love Haiti because when you are here you have to rely solely in your faith in God. You have to rest and find comfort in his power because unlike home there is no safe, comfortable zone in which you can retreat to. The verse goes on to tell us, “Put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground.”
Being here I am reminded daily that the devil does not want me here. He wants me to be afraid and to question my purpose for coming. I have to remind myself every morning that God is the ultimate armor and that through his power alone all things can be done and all the chains of evil can be broken. Intern training kept me very busy and my first week in Haiti flew by. I am amazed and inspired by the staff that are part of Northwest Haiti Christian Mission. I have nothing but great things to say about all of them and their outwardly apparent love of Christ.
Intern training flew by and before I knew it I was on a truck headed for St. Nicolas. I was slightly nervous as this would be my home for the next couple of weeks and I have never been to this area of Haiti. When I arrived I realized just how big of a difference there is between St. Nicolas and St. Louis de Nord. St. Nicolas is much more rural and has a slower pace of life.
As my first few days passed in St. Nicolas doubt began to creep into my thoughts. I began to question myself and God as to why I was placed in St. Nicolas. Why was I placed in this town which is completely different than St. Louis? I enjoy being busy all the time and would have been much more comfortable in St. Louis where the pace is much faster. Yet, I knew God was testing my commitment and faith in him.
Miss Beth really reassured me when I most needed it. She told me that the mission had been praying for a male intern to come to St. Nicolas and that God does have a plan and purpose for me here. She also shared a morning devotional focusing on faith. So often our faith in God is based on how quickly he is working in our life. When we do not understand our purpose we quickly began to lose our faith and question why God is not moving quickly.
Miss Beth mentioned the story of Caleb who remained faithful to God for over 40 years even when he did not see any result from his prayers. What a big wake up call. I was questioning why I was placed in St. Nicolas only after a few days. Where was my faith that God had placed me here and now for a reason. Colossians 4:2-6 tells us to not grow tired of prayer. Persistence is an expression of our faith. Our faith should not waiver because we do not see the results we want quickly or at all. I knew God placed me here for a reason and I just have to remain faithful and trust in his almighty plan.
I cannot tell you how excited and anxious I am to start a young men’s Bible study. I want to get a group of young men (be it fifteen or one) interested in the truth of the Bible and the life lessons that it teaches us. My first attempt at inviting young men from town was a bit of a failure. No one showed up. This could be due to the fact that many of them are taking their school finals this week but it still was a bit discouraging.
Talking with Pierre (the head of the orphanage) he really gave me some encouraging words. He explained to me what he feels is God’s call upon his life. He recently started a small Bible study with three young Haitian men. He wants to pour the word of God into the hearts and lives of these men in hopes that they will do the same with a small group of their own in the future. Pierre said his hope and prayer for Haiti is that it would be transformed by disciples such as these young men.
Listening to these words I no longer felt discouraged. If my time here means that I only reach one young man with the gospel it was worth every bit of my time. I know I am here only a short period of time. My goal us to help give confidence to young men that they are capable of sharing God’s word. Ephesians 3:19 says, “And to know that love surpasses knowledge that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Through God we can do immeasurably more than we could ever imagine.” God wants caring compassionate hearts that follow him. He does not ask that we have all the answers or are experts on the entire Bible.
As I lay in my bed on Sunday night I cannot begin to describe how much my heart wants every individual I meet to know the love of Christ. The devil has deep seeded roots in Haiti but God has already overcome. He is in control and my heart is settled knowing he is with me.