Saturday, March 22, 2014

Friday's Photos from the Farm

Here are a few photos from around the farm. It is starting to green up and it's so lovely to see. Color is a beautiful thing! 

And the kids have enjoyed the warm weather and being able to play outside! Enjoy your weekend!

Friday, March 21, 2014

Compassion Haiti Trip 2014, Day Four

Sorry it's taken a while for me to finish up about our trip. We did make it home! Unfortunately, we came home and three days later the house came down with the stomach flu. And it decided it wanted to stick around for over a week! I guess it takes a while to make its rounds through seven people. I also had catch up to do for the office, so back to Haiti…..

Thursday morning we checked out of our hotel, loaded up our luggage and head back to Port au Prince.  We went to the Haiti field office for Compassion. This is the main hub where the letters come to and are translated and then sent out to the projects, among many other things that happen here.

Compassion's motto: Releasing children from poverty in Jesus' Name.

Compassion's mission statement
We went on a tour of the office. We also got to meet the staff and ask them any questions we had. There was also a little time where a staff member from each department came and told us specifically what they do. My favorite was this guy below. His name is Abel. He was a sponsored child. He went through the program and was sponsored even through the LDP program (Leadership Development Program). After finishing university, he got a job at the Haiti office and is now sponsoring two children through Compassion! I love seeing everything come full circle. He was just a really neat man. So excited for the future of Compassion and the country of Haiti. There is so much hope for this country within the walls of this office.

Abel telling us what he does
After our time at the main office, we went to a Best Western in the city and had lunch. It was a great time to visit with each other and continue sharing our thoughts about the trip thus far.

 After lunch, we got to do some shopping along the street. Haitians are known for their art. Their paintings are amazing. We brought home two paintings of typical Haitian life. They are so beautiful.

After we checked into our last hotel, we had dinner and met with three LDP graduates. It was neat to hear their stories of breaking the cycle of poverty, getting an education and going back to their towns to encourage and some even work to help educate their neighborhoods. The desire and passion of these students to make a difference in their country is so inspiring.

 Friday morning we had breakfast and then had to load up and head back to the airport. It was time to leave this beautiful place.

But we took the time to get a couple more team pictures before we left. We were such a diverse group of people, but connected so deeply because we love our sponsored children, and now have a great love for this country of Haiti. It was such an amazing experience.

view from our plane of the ocean below

 Once we returned to Miami and got through customs and picked up our luggage, it was hard to say goodbye to these amazing friends we had met during the last several days. I am so glad that God put together this team of people from all over the country and world.

So now what? I am trying to process and figure out how we come home from an experience like that and don't forget. I know we want to raise our children with an international view. God isn't American. Life doesn't begin and end with America. There is a whole world out there, desperate for compassion, for the love of Jesus. And the only way they are going to hear it and know it is through us. God has given us the amazing privilege of being His hands and feet.

So one of the obvious ways is through sponsoring children. Children are the future of our world. Mothers and Fathers are most often reached with the Gospel through their children. Sponsoring children can be through organizations like Compassion, World Vision, or many others. It could be deciding to take in foster children. There are so many ways to reach out to the children.

There is also helping with basic necessities. I know in Haiti one of the major necessities is being to have access to clean, healthy drinking water.

So maybe we need to rethink our "need" for that cable/satelite package that gives us more channels then we will ever watch. We could perhaps change a child's life for eternity.

Maybe those expensive lattes we get every day could instead be used to change the life of a person.

 Or that huge data package for our cell phones that we never use up each month.

Or perhaps we could choose to go meatless one meal a week and eat rice and beans and think and pray for our brothers and sisters in other countries who are struggling to put food on the table.

Maybe it would be praying for the nations around the world, using resources like Operation World. All I know is that we are not to be inactive, not doing anything. Even if we aren't called to be missionaries in foreign lands, there is plenty we can do in other ways, right here, right now.