Sometimes… I get so focused on ministry and missions, I forget about the people in between. I have schedules and phone calls, flights and destinations, and the people that get me there and help me along the way, I will often overlook. Becoming too focused on thigs that seem like good things, can make me miss the best opportunities in life. Why?! I say to myself that I am committing my life to ministry, but I don’t share Christ with those I pass in the airport, and sometimes don’t even smile at the lady selling me a seven dollar granola bar next to the gate I am about fly out. Regardless of what vocation we are in, whether it is behind the surgical mask, garage truck, or cockpit, we all have a calling. We miss it everyday we forget about the people in between.
I glanced at an awkward man next to the airport phone booth. He finishes his drink, as I was surprised to see whom he was talking to. Will and Conner, two guys on our trip that I have become very close with over the past years, are deep in conversation with the man. I ease drop as I hear them giving this man hope in a situation that looks hopeless. They are telling him about how life with Christ is beyond what you can know before experiencing it first hand. I am blown away. These guys haven't even stepped foot into our destination and they are caring about someone in between. That is what it is about. That is truly "getting it." Impact has been made on us and on those around us just in the travel to Haiti. Honestly, impact like I have never seen it before. These students… amaze me. All of them. Their faith, their boldness, their trust, their courage… I would do anything to have the faith they have when I was their age.
After boarding the plane bound towards Port-au-prince, we realize that it was full of about 90% mission teams. It was extremely uplifting being able to talk to others in the same route for the same reason. The new trip excitement began to set in.
Since I have been on a few flights before into the mission field, my new trip excitement doesn’t hit me like it used to. They call it the honeymoon phase. This time it wasn’t there much at all, which allowed God to impact my heart in a way he never has before, or a way I have never let him before.
After touching down on the runway, and weaving our way through customs, my heart was soon shattered walking out into the hot Haitian climate. The air is stiff and I can taste the humidity. My eyes first locked with a boy on the other side of a chain link fence that he happened to be gripping tightly while staring deep into me. Beggars lined the wall as we proceed through with our bags and bags of bags. Survivors may be a better word. Many of the men and children were missing limbs, which I am assuming was from he destruction that took place here nearly 2 years ago. It looks like it happened 2 weeks ago. Haiti is in shambles. Hopeless is a fitting word from the outer perspective. Buildings lay in ruins, people dressed in rags, and smells of sewage and poverty wreaked the air. Something I have never seen before…. countless fields stretching to the horizon of tents. Tents that are now homes to those that homes now lay in pieces. I still can’t believe the things we are seeing. Worse than I thought it would be. God is here though. We have seen it already. Hope is being restored to the hopeless.
So many more stories to come...