Texas Tech 2015 – Day 4…

March 17

Bonswa zami!

Kathryn- the nursing presentations were awesome! We gave three- STDs, puberty, and drugs/drinking/smoking. During the STD and puberty presentations there were some great Biblical questions asked. What’s so interesting to me is that we grow up with faith; we know that Mary was a virgin and that Adam and Eve were formed as mature beings. The Haitians can’t grasp those concepts because their thinking is so concrete. They were wondering how Adam and Eve could be fully formed when we come out as babies. This led us to share scriptures from Genesis with them. And if sex before marriage is bad, did Mary marry Joseph before she became pregnant? How could Mary become pregnant without sex?

There were some challenging questions asked and even a couple of sassy retorts to our answers, but they finally understood. We give the presentations again tomorrow, so we are hoping to have a lot more people. This morning we woke up to a beautifully clear sky after last night’s rain. Jacob gave our devotional, and after we finished breakfast two groups left for Savane Mole while one stayed behind to do construction in Mole St. Nicholas and us four nursing students went to the clinic.

When we got to the clinic, Jody put two of us in the pharmacy to dispense meds and fill prescriptions, one person taking vital signs, and one person shadowed her. I started out in the pharmacy, where we dispensed liquid children’s Tylenol, liquid iron, and liquid anti-worm medication into containers because they are the most common drugs given out. Diana, our interpreter (who also wants to be a nurse), mixed equal parts hydrocortisone, Neosporin, and antifungal cream into each container to be handed out (thank you FBCC Preschool!).

Jody was very grateful for us being there to help her today; we caught a lot of high blood pressures that confirmed the patient’s complaints (like headaches). We got to see about fifty patients today from around the Mole, and Jody said Thursday should be interesting because there were cards for free care handed out in Karnage, a fishing village about 30 minutes away. We finished with patients around 12:15 and after lunch we headed to the church to wait for kids to show up for the teen conference.

Not very many did, so we took it to the streets again and had the conference in the town square. Afterwards, we divided and played with the kids. Every night we all fall into bed completely exhausted, and I expect tonight to be no different. I have a chronic stench and I’m pretty sure my toes are now permanently dirty, but I’ve never felt happier. Every time I think I can’t love any deeper, I go to the orphanage and I am pummeled with clinging hands, beaming white smiles, and I’m proven wrong once again. I am reminded of John 14:18 where Jesus promises, “I will not leave you as orphans, I will come to you.” The orphans run at us, arms stretched out wide, the way that we should run to Jesus. The same faith that the orphans have in trusting that we will come play with them is the same childlike faith that we are challenged to have in the return of our Savior.

The people of Haiti are beautiful. They are beyond grateful for our help and especially our prayers, something so trivial and most often taken for granted in the States. One of the hardest things to remember, though, is that we don’t truly heal people. We can only care for them- Jesus is the one who cures.

Sometimes I wish prayer could be written as a prescription, because the power of prayer is real and just as potent as the strongest medicine. I am so looking forward to the rest of this week and all the more challenges that the Haitians can bring. I am being pushed out of my comfort zone (if there is such a thing in Haiti) and being shown the true, ultimate definition of love and joy.

I am in love with the country and the people, and I might have to “accidentally lose my passport” and stay here forever (JK mom). Please continue praying for us, we need the strength! Pray that the hearts and the minds of the people are open and receptive to the Good News as the teams go hut to hut, and that the nursing students can actually make a difference in the health of the people’s lives.

Lindsay Schaum

***

Hey Friends and Family,

When I decided to come to Haiti, my idea was that God would use me to help teach Haitians about him. Boy was I wrong! I have learned so much about Jesus from the Haitians while attempting to teach them. In a place that at times seems so void of Jesus Christ and Christianity, I have never felt closer to Him. He has been with this group from the moment we each committed to going and He continues to be with us here in Haiti. Tonight I just wanted to share a few experiences about what God has taught me through this trip thus far.

  1. Always Find Joy. Today before the Youth Conference the group hung out at the soccer fields in The Mole where many children and teenagers hang out after school. As I am sure you can tell by the pictures the clothes that the majority of the people wear are hardly clothes at all. While sitting with Shannon and Avery, two little boys approached us and were acting pretty shy. Neither of the boys had pants at all, and the younger boy’s shirt had more holes than I could count and was a couple sizes too big. Shannon immediately embraced them and began talking with them. My heart broke! I had to stay back as she walked away with them because I was trying my hardest to choke back tears. According to Al and Averie, I am a feeler! When I finally pulled myself together I went and sat with Shannon and the two boys. Although I have no idea what they were saying they were smiling and laughing.   Even though they were hardly clothed, were covered in what looked like bug bites, and had calluses on their tiny feet, they found joy. John 15:11 says, “I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.” If we are truly Christians and have Jesus in our lives we should always be able to find Joy, no matter the circumstance!
  1. Love speaks all languages. The first day in Haiti, Morgan an intern here, was giving us a tour and showed us the orphanage. They all immediately came to us and started climbing all over us because they were so happy to see us there. They were all trying so hard to communicate with us. I was so discouraged and wanted to know what they were saying so bad. I started questioning how in the world I was going to tell these people about Jesus if I can’t speak their language. Right after this thought I had an overwhelming feeling of God saying, “Kaitlyn, love speaks all languages, show love and I will do the rest.” The rest of the week I have made it my goal to show and speak love and know that God is doing the rest.

 

  1. Moses moments still exist. I am part of the nursing team and as Lindsay explained earlier the presentation got a little difficult. I had tried to think about every question that could possibly be asked about these topics. Funny thing is not a single question I thought would be asked was actually asked. God has a good sense of humor.

One question that was particularly difficult was “So if God says we are made in his image then why were Adam and Eve formed as adults and we have to start as babies?” Lindsay and I literally just looked at each other like uhhh…. I quickly prayed that God would give me the words to say and WOW! I started talking about trees and how God made a tree that gives off seeds so that new trees grow and compared it to how a human has a seed from God that is used to help make new humans because when he created all this he said “It is good” and he wants us to keep reproducing so he intricately made us so that we could make more of his favorite creations. The funny thing is, I had no idea what was coming out of my mouth as I said it. It was literally like I opened my mouth and God spoke through me just as Christ spoke through Moses. At the moment I began to feel inadequate to teach these people about these topics, God showed me how adequate he was to teach through me.

Needless to say there are some pretty amazing things going on here in Haiti. I cannot wait to see how God continues to use this team in Haiti. Keep the prayers coming because they are appreciated more than y’all will ever know. Count your blessings while you are at it because we are ALL so fortunate! Love y’all so much.

 

Kaitlyn Sides

***

Hey Fam, Allison here.

So today my team went to the town Savan Mole for VBS. We gathered up the kids from the town and headed to the school for games. We had anywhere from 20 to 40 kids at one point (I’m really bad at estimating numbers, so I could be way off here) playing Duck-Duck-Goose, Little Sally Walker, and Red Light/Green Light. Shannon led a great lesson about Jesus and redemption that the kids really seemed to understand. They all made beaded bracelets to represent different parts of the gospel, and that’s something they can keep with them to remember our lesson and remember us.

For the entirety last game of the last game, I stood off to the side holding a little baby girl in my arms so her sister could play. At first she wanted nothing to do with me and just wanted to go back to Sissy, but after several verses of the Barney song and every lullaby I know, she fell asleep in my arms. I don’t really think of myself as a big “baby person,” but y’all. I was ready to take this baby girl home. (Don’t worry parents/roommates – I gave her back). Leaving that town and watching some of the kids chase after us on the tap-tap has definitely been the hardest part of all my time in Haiti.

Back at the mission, we got ready for our Youth Conference at 2:00. For the second day in a row, Jesus decided to throw us a curve ball and send us out into the town instead of having the conference in the mission church. We gathered a bit of a crowd out in the square. People were playing soccer, Frisbee, football, and dancing. Averie taught everyone the “Listen to Your Heart” dance. We had a real party going! Khalil, Brooke, and Holly spoke to the crowd. They gave a great message about following God when it doesn’t make sense, and I know it really resonated with me. They spoke very well and I think everyone in the crowd related to their words.

We just finished up small groups and I am currently sitting on the ground in the corner of the cafeteria listening to people hang out. #fomo. Speaking of small groups, mine is the best one. Shannon is a boss, and we are h i l a r I o u s . Also, Brady is a punk. Dear Brady’s family: your kid is a punk. He makes us laugh.

Thank you to everyone who has been commenting on the blog! We read the comments aloud every evening at dinner, and it really lifts our spirits. Shout out to Aunt Sherry: your comment made me smile! Thank you for keeping us in your prayers.

Basic summary of this trip so far and life in general: Jesus is really freaking cool. I know we will be leaving the mole sooner than we would like, so I hope to live it up and not waste a single moment.

See y’all soon! Mwen remen ou.

Allison Duncan

**Please feel free to leave comments. Comments will be read every night at dinner. You may notice a delay from the time you comment until it shows up on the post as all comments must be approved.

17 comments

  1. Hey Emily!!
    Wow. I cannot even begin to express how much joy my heart feels knowing that you are in the Mole right now sharing the Gospel. The Lord has done such a work in your heart and that is so evident. I am loving seeing all these pictures of you and the others from the Wesley serving the beautiful people and their villages. I am very eager to here all about this trip to Haiti. I miss and love you lots, biggie.
    -Tory Cooper

    1. Emily, Loved seeing all the pictures and the love that shines from within your heart. Have a safe trip home. Love Granny

  2. Awesome update! You have all been extremely inspirational in your time spent with the people of Haiti. It’s been interesting reading personal experiences and the devotionals given day to day. From the pictures alone, you can see the appreciation on the faces of God’s little children. I know that God is excellent at using individuals in the way that he has made each of us. So whether you’re serving by picking up rocks, medically caring for the locals, in fellowship or planting spiritual seeds, I pray the good news of the Gospel reaches the hearts of many in every village God would lead you to. I encourage you with one of my favorite quotes from St. Francis of Assisi “Preach the Gospel at all times and when necessary use words.” My continued prayer is with you all.
    -Luis

    Please tell Kaitlyn she is greatly missed.

    “How will they preach unless they are sent? Just as it is written, “HOW BEAUTIFUL ARE THE FEET OF THOSE WHO BRING GOOD NEWS OF GOOD THINGS!” (‭Romans‬ ‭10‬:‭15‬ NASB)

  3. “It was literally like I opened my mouth and God spoke through me just as Christ spoke through Moses.” YES, YES, YES!!! God is so faithful. We won’t learn “faithfulness” until we are put in situations that we must call on Him and trust Him to move through the Holy Spirit and then we obey. What a fabulous testimony to allowing the Holy Spirit to move and to trust Him to speak through you, Kaitlyn! Thank you for sharing. Love seeing all the pictures. The people of Haiti are beautiful. You will come home changed forever. God and the people of Haiti have a way of doing that to your heart! Are you witnessing what true JOY is? Joy in the midst of hardship and suffering. Powerful. Praying for the team to continue to be used by the Holy Spirit on a moment to moment basis. “The fervent prayers of the righteous man availeth much” James 5:16

  4. Emily Gardner are you really there your not in very many pictures!!! We pray for all of you at every supper as you do Gods work Love Mom and Dad

  5. Love you guys and I love seeing the work you all are doing and the smiles on the faces of the Haitian people. Praying for you always.

    Lindsay,

    Don’t give Shannon any ideas about “losing” her passport.

    Shannon,

    Even if you come back and keep those braids I promise I’ll still marry you.

    Also Zeus is still a punk

    YLA

  6. Allison, Your Mom and I are very happy to hear the mission trip is going so well. Looks like you are making a lot of friends with the children. Whether you recognize it or not, you’ve always had a knack for connecting with the little ones and becoming their friend. I’m glad you are able to reach so many and spread the word of God. You’re deep faith is inspiring to me and others.
    Enjoy the rest of your trip. You have a really aggressive itenerary so rest whenever you can on the way home. Be sure and call whenever you get to the states.

    With all our love,

    Mom and Dad

  7. I just love this blog and reading all of the stories and testimonies given each day. I am always in awe of how easily and beautifully you all are able to relay your daily experiences of seeing God in action. I also love to look at the pictures of your smiling faces and the Haitian people…. It moves me to tears every time. It brings such joy to my heart to know that God is working through you and in you at the mole.
    Here at home we are in constant prayer for all of you. Prayers for safety, strength, words, patience, healing, love, and encounters that will reach the Haitians and bring them – and you – closer to the Lord.

    Em, I love you and miss you so much! Soooo much! Can’t wait to hear all about your experiences.
    Love love Love you! mom

  8. I love reading your comments in all that you do day to day its interesting to hear God speaking thru you you are truly a miracle for doing God’s work keep up the good work we’re praying you get thru to the people there God Bless you all be safe Diane

  9. It has been amazing reading all that is being accomplished by each and everyone one of you! I have so enjoyed reading each day what has been happening in Haiti. It has even brought tears to my eyes as I read about the love being shown to by you and to you. Keep on being the hands and feet of God and yes, He will provide the answers to the questions being asked. Prayers are being said daily for you by many family and friends. God is not finished with any of you and the best is yet to be!

    Oh and Lindsay, hang on to that passport! We miss and love you!

  10. What a blessing to read your words each day of what God is doing in and through you in Haiti. It so blesses and enriches my soul more than you will ever know. Even though I am not there, I truly feel I am on the journey with you as I read your posts and see your pictures. It is so evident that the power of the Holy Spirit is among you all….in a strong and mighty way. I love you all and so proud of you for choosing to spend your spring break among the Haitian people. “Your love, Lord, reaches to the heavens, your faithfulness to the skies. Your righteousness is like the highest mountains” Psalm 36:5:6 Keep on reaching the people of Haiti and remain faithful and steadfast in His love.
    Prayers and blessings from Texas,
    Penny

  11. Emily Mc

    So happy you are continually listening to God and serving Him in the way you love. We love you. Enjoy every moment.

    Most Love from YaYa

  12. Thanks so much for sharing….continue to be transformed….laugh uncontrollably…cry intensely..hug every person you can,…find the joy that these locals have…love them…love yourself…hold hands and love Jesus together. God is doing a mighty work there…I am so proud and honored that each of you are there…..lots of love and prayers coming your way from the LBK…Lea Ann ( Ty’s mamma)

  13. Love you, Caroline Anne! Can’t wait to hear all the stories! Just wanted you to know we are praying, reading the blogs, and missing you, but praising God for the GOOD WORK He is doing in and through you and the team. xoxo “Fran” 🙂

  14. AHH OH MY GOODNESS HAITI TEAM 2015 WASSUP!!! KHALIL, KEEP CARRYING ALL THE CHILDREN. USE YOUR STRONG ARMS AND SWING THEM ROUND AND ROUND.

    On a real note,

    I was so deeply encouraged by the dependence on Jesus that three writers blogged about last night (Allison, Lindsey, and Kaitlyn). Thank you for sharing what the Lord is doing. Even if it won’t be posted on a blog, (for everyone now), keep blogging / journaling and writing! It is my great regret that I lost my journal with my journal logs about Haiti. There are so many sweet moments where the Lord shared his heart and burden with me this time last year.

    To the team: Brothers and sisters! Is it not so sweet to be near to the heart of Jesus in service? Persevere and go harder and harder. Don’t be found shrinking back near the finish line. May your running and striving be a response to the Lord’s love and kindness that he has shown you. Your obedience and service is a greater reach into his grace and love – don’t act independent from that. I am so excited to see how the Lord continues to use you guys.

    A quote that has been very challenging and stimulating for me has been one from A.C. Dixon. He says:

    When we depend upon organizations, we get what organizations can do;
    when we depend upon educations, we get what educations can do;
    when we depend upon man, we get what man can do;
    BUT when we depend upon prayer, we get what God can do.

    May your heart’s cry and your continual burden be rooted from prayer. If you haven’t been praying for the Lord to move miraculously in prayer, don’t be discouraged! Start tonight. Ask the Lord to give you a burden for something that he alone can answer. There are many lost souls in the Mole that can only be reached through the power of the Holy Spirit in prayer. You can hold awesome youth conferences, give them medicine, feed them, etc. It will be an act of the Lord to move in their hearts! Persist in prayer, friends. Don’t lose that. Ask the Lord to continue breaking your heart for the Haitians/lost people everywhere. Feel the burden and quickly give it to the Lord in prayer. He is quick to hear his children seek Him.

    To the returners: Averie, Hailey, Emily, Avery Fowler, Shannon, Maddux, Allison, Ty (and anyone else that I’ve missed). I am so thankful that you have returned to these people! Thank you for being obedient to the Lord to serve and care for them. Continue loving and serving with the capacity that the Lord has given you – don’t compare yourself to one another or your last Haiti trip, but serve with contentment and joy. I am glad that I was able to experience this trip with you all last year.

    To Holly and Lindsey: !!! I was so excited to see that you were both on this trip! Holly, it brings me much joy to see you with Haitian kids in your arms. I bet they are going nuts over your red hair. I pray that this trip continues to transform you and everyone else in this group. Lindsey: I am so encouraged to see how far you’ve grown! I recall in our saltshaker group how you haven’t prayed out loud before. Now, God has brought your passion for nursing and caring for people to Haiti for his glory. I’m so thankful to see how you are growing with a desire to serve others with the gifts and opportunities that he has given you.

    To the new people that I have not met: Again, I am sorry that I haven’t met you yet! I am so thankful that you are on this trip. I pray that you are not only enjoying this trip, but most of all being challenged to be men and women who seek the Lord. That is what Haiti / the nations needs the most! I hope that you’ve enjoyed your time in Haiti and that God continues to speak and teach you. Reflect on and cherish your time here.

    To Khalil: Bro. I wish I was able to minister and serve beside you. I love you deeply and I can’t wait to have a phone call about Haiti. I bet you are transforming from a caramel color to a Haitian black color. Teehee. But for real man, continue to be the Lord’s ambassador in Haiti. Pray, pray, pray. For encouragement, “But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be of God and not from ourselves; we are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying about in the body the dying of Jesus, so that the life f Jesus also may be manifested in our body. For we who live are constantly being delivered over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. So death works in us, but life in you.” 2 Corinthians 4:7-11. May you strive to showcase the great treasure of the gospel even at the great expense of your life, so that the life of Jesus may be life to those who are near.

    Al, my dear friend: I have been praying for you this last week. I pray that the Lord continues to lead you and establish His love for you while you’ve been in Haiti. Your service, shepherding, and obedience never goes unnoticed before his eyes. Thank you for faithfully serving so many at the Wesley Foundation and for continuing to make this trip to Haiti a possibility and reality for so many students. This trip is always so impactful for so many – God has used you in so many ways! So don’t be discouraged, but take heart. There is an eternity that is to be fought for and that is guaranteed by the Holy Spirit. I praise God for you, Al. Here is a blue leadership bead. You definitely deserve it.

    Jody: I doubt your remember me, but thank you for being obedient to the Lord and for serving the people there. I pray that you don’t allow the busyness of ministry and being a full time missionary take away from your time with the Lord. I pray that you have been growing in prayer, times of solitude, and in the Scriptures. I pray that you are not only being poured out, but being poured into as well by the goodness of the Lord. Please take care of yourself and rest well – may the Lord not only sustain you, but replenish you as you draw near to Him.

    I have been praying for God to move mightily in the Mole this week. I cannot wait to hear how everything goes. Persevere! Finish well!

    Love always,
    Josh

  15. To Emily Gardner you are being missed here in the states but so glad you are sharing the good news to the nations!

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