Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Measuring by Wednesdays

This is my third Wednesday in Haiti.
A place that is, I'm told, considered a fourth world country.
My second year working at Mission of Hope.
Today is not the first time that I've considered just what exactly I am here to do. I guess you might say reconsidered. Is that okay?
I've made lists of fives, tens and twenties of boxes to check off, mark with a little 'x'.
I've 'x'd' ones, threes and fives of those boxes on those lists.
I've spent numbers of dollars on things to hang in my room (a mirror, a flock of seagulls) and on food from the market, the museum, the (deli)mart.
I've entered more eight-digit numbers into my phone's memory - eight because there are too many out there to accommodate with just seven numbers, I suppose.
This very moment I can recall my social insurance number, my passport number, my phone number from growing up in Bramalea and my apartment number from Church Street in Toronto... 389--404B.
Sixty-one. That's how many precious ones live in the Village of Hope Orphanage. Sixty-one beds will soon be filled by their big and little selves. Sixty-one of them finishing this special day of the twenty-ninth of February. Special because this is a leap year but also because we have all gotten through another day.
We measured today with hours and minutes and light and dark.
Tomorrow, a new month (!), will be divided the same way.
Next Wednesday is a mystery. Will I be different? Will my Creole be better? Will the fruit of my time invested in others, in babies, in mothers, in brothers - will it be evident? Will this nail polish last or get chipped off fast? Will my faith change, be challenged, be the same? Will I learn a new way to love? Will I meet a new person to give love to? Will be able to receive love back better than this Wednesday?

Dear Author and Perfector,
Please give us what we need for tonight.
Including acceptance of unknown things.

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Settling in ... Sort of

In the past week and a half I have been greatly blessed.
I had safe travel through airspace, the Dominican Republic, Port-Au-Prince and up and down this rocky hill here at Mission of Hope. Talk about zooming in...
I was able to see two friends in DR, connect with the Haiti team and Pastor Richard at his house in the capital, visit with friends from last year (who came to MOH for Rachel's wedding) and get my arms around the 60+ kids I've been missing.
I rode a horse, had a beautiful day at the beach, witnessed a wonderful friend's wedding, deepened relationships with friends, found my office totally looted and then was blessed by two of the younger girls cleaning and organizing the whole thing on their own... I've had some great food, great company, great worship, great play... I wish I could show you all the photos I've taken and share all the moments I've been having... but you're not here.
Which brings me to some prayer requests. It is difficult to be here. It just has hard aspects that are totally out of one's power to change. There's so much good but a lot of loss too. And homesickness is an issue for me.
Also, there is a great spiritual battle going on around us. Of course that part of our world is always active, but here it sometimes is magnified. I had the worst nightmare of my life last week. Others have had some bad dreams as well.
Please pray as you are led for this place and the ministry here - the protection of those who work and live here - the wisdom and discipline we need to move forward in healthy ways - our integrity - and worship of the One who is our Reason.

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

From La Capital to La Other Capital

Today's bus ride was reasonably uneventful...only some minor interesting conversations at the Haitian side of the border regarding some boxes being brought in with medical supplies.
No one cared at all about the four car doors, the hood and the trunk lid also stowed in the Capital Coach lines under-bus compartment.
I left Santo Domingo at about 8am and arrived in Port-Au-Prince 7 hours later. Pastor Richard picked me up at the station just a few minutes after I arrived which was so lovely. It has always been hours of waiting in the past so today's prompt pick up was a special blessing at the end of my path to Haiti.
Tomorrow I will be at Mission of Hope before lunch, if all goes well, and will be so pleased to not be carrying around these suitcases any more! Also, I can't wait to see everyone there!!
Thank you so much for your prayers for safety and for strength. To be honest the last week or two has been quite exhausting and I think it will be a few days of taking things easy - and enjoying the celebrations around Rachel and Kenol's wedding - before I start to feel like myself again.
It has been an emotional few months and I am trying to rest in God's leading, trying to tap into His peace through this transitional time and trying to keep focus on the potential beauty of what we are attempting.
Thank you for your help and love and prayers.

Thursday, 2 February 2012

Speedy Update with some Details:

It's Thursday evening.
I just spent a few enjoyable hours with my Ferguson Grandparents and am now at my brother's place for the night so that first thing (Okay, 9:30) in the morning I will be able to go with my nephew to his weekly "Little Gym" class. I'm really pumped about it. Brought my fancy new camera and everything!
Saturday I fly out of YYZ to D.R. to make my way by bus across Hispaniola, visiting a couple of friends along the way, to PAP.
I'll be there by Tuesday afternoon, stay with Pastor Richard in Port-au-Prince and then get a ride (with one of the MOH drivers) to Mission of Hope in the morning.
This time next week I'll be looking forward to my second night's sleep at the mission.
I have been so encouraged all week by family and friends and God.
I feel tired but peaceful (despite needing to finish packing tomorrow eve).
I am not 100% subscribed in my funding but I am pretty close with all the donations and promises that came in during January. I'm pretty much speechless about that.
The weekend of visitors was wonderful. I felt so incredibly loved by all these beautiful gifts of people in my life (some who drove through storms they nicknamed "what heaven looks like").
Also speechless.
Except to say Thank You.
And I love you.
And God bless you.
And XO.