We finally did what we came to do! We visited Village of Hope and it is better than we dreamed. (See pics in separate email )
We helped to assemble 2/3 of a Haiti house. The second roof must go on and the bolts have to be tightened. That will be number 50! We will work on number 51 when rock arrives for the foundation.
That is one thing we didn't expect. Hatian time is not the same as ours, or as I put it earlier today.. "There is that funny American idea of efficiency." Time is more flexible, and perhaps more valuable. We are busy doing lots of things... This and that... Here and there. The Hatians are busy living... (More than surviving in the case of village of Hope although that is certainly a big issue for many people.) No, I mean they are busy caring for children (about 10 per family) making a roof for a gazebo, threshing grain, cooking rice,... Drying it... Cracking it... And cooking it again, doing laundry (often in the creek - and often dried on rocks. After hurricane Sandy, in fact, school was out for a day for laundry. It is a real project!) (back to living...) Fixing flat tires without a fancy tire changer, sweeping the dirt path in front of the house, plowing a field with a team of oxen (the farmers might correct me on the species... Jim and Scott tried it too. Ha! ) and a million other things.
These are aren't problems to be overcome which is the way many of us approach life. They are simply what you do. God has given us enough time to live... Why do we feel so driven to do SO SO SO much more? Could we learn a lesson here? Would life be qualitatively better if were to switch to God's time?... Remember God is the Lord of the Sabbath. Could we do a little less (which might mean making do with a little less) in order to gain the important relationships with God and each other? ... Just asking ^o^
Back to village of Hope. It is more than a village. It is a living church, where people live in the light of Christ. (a significant part of that light comes from two angels named Wasson (excuse the spelling that is the way it sounds ) and Jasmine. The directors of the village who both just radiate Jesus love. (They live in two h4h homes. One is a bedroom. The other the Kitchen and dining. They live there it see seems with two other adults and 2 children. I hope to get to know the family better. See pics )
It appears that their job description is to love the least of these in a way that lifts them up so they can love God and neighbor also....
Wait! that is the job description god has given each of us. I have not seen it lived out like this before... Although Wasson is honest about problems (like near by drug trafficking, and neighbors not getting along)
1. Have had so little (while we were yet sinners)
2. Have received so much by being accepted here (Christ died for us all Romans 5:8)
3. and even more, they have the love of Wasson and Jasmine (and Les and Eball and Eddie, and Ken DeYoung and people like you and us.) They have A CHANCE. A chance to live in the village, a chance to learn the love of god, and a chance to love as they have been loved.
... They live the daily spiritual struggle of the early church in a way that We may never know. How exciting it is to be invited to preach in that context this Sunday. (do you suppose Dian will get bulletins ready and over here for me?)
I know this has been more of a smorgasbord than the previous blogs, but there is so much to to tell.
Cliff plowed a field today with Ken as ballast (not dead weight as some have said) standing on the plow.
Everyone got the house started, but Kim, Scott, Jimmy and I mostly helped with the home. I say helped because they have trained a crew of Hatians (residents of the village) to assemble them. ($10 equivalent per day is very generous pay and they make us look like lollygaggers!) it is a joy to work with then knowing that it be helps them and it is a step toward changing the culture of dependence that is so prevalent here. That $40 per day that global Compassion pays cam make such a difference. Remember the Average Haitian family makes $68 per year. 8-)
We have had some sickness. Allan was out of commission today with a bug he may have even brought from home. Ken was out for 1/2 a day reacting to his malaria medicine. Pray for health.
Also pray for an extra gift of love. They soak it up as fast as we can spread it around.
Finally pics #4 email contains a picture of EVE who may have CP. His" buggy" is all he has. Literally! It is an awful lot like the ones the Iowa UMM make! Does anyone remember what they are called?
sent from my s3