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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

In one month...



     Just a few of the children I look forward to loving on when I return

Last Wednesday I gave my three week notice at my workplace, Children's Hospital. When I asked our nurse specialist when my manager would be back at work, she responded with, "You better not be quitting." I couldn't lie so I told her "yes." She was very supportive of my reason (she wasn't surprised) and even went so far as to say she might like to come visit me! Rarely do I have someone bring that idea up themselves... it seems that it comes from some prompting on my part or others. My manager was understanding and supportive as well. My last day is November 8th. On November 16th I will be flying out of Seattle to see a few friends for a couple of days in California. Then, I will spend two nights with Ted and Lisa Hojara in Fort Lauderdale (the Hojaras lived in Haiti last year and worked with Maison de Lumiere). On November 21st I arrive in Haiti, the same day as a wonderful group of people from Bill and Susette's church in the states, Kings Harbor. I have met and enjoyed many of these people on their previous trips to Haiti.


What will I be doing with Maison de Lumiere? Much of the same duties I had before: nurse for the childrens' homes, nurse for the community, and leading bible studies for the girls alongside the Haitian staff and my new friend Dana and Bill and Sue's daughter, Ariana. Dana is living at the guesthouse,  ministering to the girls, and overseeing the feeding program for the neighborhood kids. She and I will be roommates. Ariana (my friend I tutored in math last year) is now living at the girls' home. I would love to reach out more to the ladies in our neighborhood with Bible studies, health and hygiene classes, and teach them how to read.

Stay tuned for updates from Haiti upon my arrival and check out my friends' blogs from Haiti listed to the right.

Reflection

The past five months that I have been back in Seattle have caused much reflection and prayer on my part. I have needed to drawer nearer to God to heal my heart, to strengthen me, and to learn how to live in America again.   


I have also been praying to know if it is the Lord's will for me to return to Haiti long-term again. I had asked Susette (who started the Maison de Lumiere ministry with her husband, Bill) how she knew she was called to live in Haiti. She said she first knew when she felt the plane was going the wrong way after her first visit to Haiti and she was leaving. She feels more at home in Haiti than she does in the states...not that she loves her friends and family in the states any less. It is painful for her to leave them. But, she feels more passionate about serving in Haiti than she does anywhere. And, she had a heart for the boys since she first met them when some of them were living in a terrible situation. This conversation has been resounding in my head since we had it. I knew that all these things applied to me when I was still in Haiti. Yet, I felt like I needed to be back in the states to really know it and for other reasons. As I've said before, I have loved being back with my family and friends. It has actually been an easier- not easy- adjustment than I had thought it would be. However, the faces of the Haitians, especially the children, flash through my mind a thousand times a day and I think of all the memories we created together. My heart feels like a big hole has been cut out of it and left behind in Haiti. I have never loved doing anything as much as I have loved "doing" Haiti. My church is excited to financially and prayerfully support me and the Manasseros have asked me to return. For these reasons I see that the Lord has called me back. Additionally, I am convicted by these verses:


Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.   James 1:27


I am NOT saying that Christians obtain their salvation or a relationship with God by works or looking after orphans. I am saying that looking after orphans (and widows) is a fruit or sign of our relationship and salvation by Christ. And He commands that we do it.  How are we looking after orphans and widows? How are YOU looking after orphans and widows? What does this look like to you in your life?


I am NOT tooting my own horn. It is only by the grace of God that I have a desire to do what I am doing. He has given me these dreams and put His love in me to love Haiti and its people. I give Him the glory. I wouldn't be doing this of my own volition. I am thankful I won't be doing it alone or by my own strength.