Reading Candace’s most recent post brought to the surface a lot of the feelings and observations that I have also experienced these past couple of days. Today, while walking to the church to finish painting and sort books, the walk felt a little different than prior walks. Things that had been weighing heavily on my mind the past couple of days were brought full circle. It was 8:30 am and already blazing hot, and there were children playing happily alongside the dirt road, merrily greeting us with Bonjour as we passed, sweating bullets because we just came from our very nicely air conditioned hotel. As we came to the church, there were young men clearing the land with machetes in the prior mentioned sun. Little things like those just show the resiliency of the Haitian people. The men clearing the land may have experienced their own personal loss due to the earthquake. They may be living in the tent village outside of the church. But, for the good of the church & their community, they will work outside all morning clearing land and focus on the future. I think that is the part that gets me the most. I try to think how I would react in this same type of situation, and how quickly I would be able to get back to normalcy. As Candace mentioned, the pastor showed us the part of Jacmel that was most affected by the earthquake. The homes were still in ruins, but all around us, as was mentioned by Joyce in her blog about Port Au Prince, Jacmel was hustling and bustling and moving on.
Candace ever so graciously hauled here some gifts that we wanted to give to the pastor. During kidsweek at Park Street this year, the kids made tie dye t shirts for us to bring and give to kids. We had the chance to give these to the pastor yesterday, along with colored pencils, notebooks, book, etc., and we praise God that a need was met with the gifts. As Candace said about the pens, they have had this need for a bit for school supplies, and thankfully Candace was able to help meet that need. As far as the shirts go, it turns out that there is a team of boys who play football (soccer), and a lot of them were not going to be able to play this year because of lack of funds for uniforms. But with the T shirts, they will be able to play now because the pastor will be using them as uniforms. Again, praise God! It just takes my breath away thinking how the Lord has his plans. I remember watching the kids twisting & tying & painting and dying their shirts so deliberately and carefully. Now, they will be used in a great way by children, many their own age, they have never and probably will never meet.
This afternoon, after painting and sorting through books this morning, we will be going into the city again to be shown some places by the pastor, who is an amazing host. Thursday, through Laura’s awesome French speaking, she arranged for us to sing at the prayer service that they have. We are super excited for this opportunity, and the pastor said that we will get a chance to meet the youth that will be using the shirts this year. Please pray that this time of sharing with this community will be prosperous for the Lord, and that we will reach some of these wonderful people with the words and music that the Lord has given us.