Saturday, January 15, 2011

Jan. 12, 2010 4:53 p.m.

A year ago, I never thought about Haiti. I didn't even really know where Haiti was on a map. I didn't know the history, the poverty, the government. I didn't know a single name of a town or village in Haiti and I certainly didn't know the capitol of Haiti.

I never gave a thought to Haiti. NEVER !!

I didn't know. I was unaware of their poverty, needs, struggle. I was too busy living my life.

Jan. 12, 2010 at 4:53 p.m. a 7.0 earthquake changed all of that. I'll never forget being stunned as I watched CNN and the coverage of the rescue attempts. I saw my first glimpse of Haitian people. I was crushed for them. I've always been a very sensitive person, feeling deep emotions and crying for people I don't know. I couldn't turn away. I thought about them day and night. I prayed and cried out to God to save them.

I had no idea that 6 months later I'd be on a plane to Haiti for a medical mission trip. I had no idea how Haiti would force itself into my heart and that I'd have an obsession with learning more about the history, the people, and their current struggles. I had no idea I'd make Haitian friends during my 15 days there. I never thought I'd write letters and keep in touch. I never imagined I'd keep a file folder in my bedroom drawer with letters from my new Haitian friend. That I'd cry when I would receive his letters. I never knew how much Haiti would be on my mind. I couldn't have imagined I would lay awake at night and sob for their pain.

I never dreamed I'd be heading back for a second time. I'm leaving Feb. 5-12 to do another medical mission trip with Samaritan's Purse. I'll be working in the Cholera tent hospital. I am thrilled to have another chance to love, bring hope, and encourage the Haitian people who have taken over my thoughts and invaded my life in so many ways.

Since my first trip in July- I've felt like I've had one foot in Michigan, here with my precious family and my other foot in Haiti. I've longed to go back. Begged God for an opportunity to go back. God is good to give me a passion for Haiti and a deep to desire to help.

My second trip was supposed to be Jan. 22-29, but Samaritan's Purse called me and asked that I switch to Feb. 5. So, now I count down the days, make lists of what I'll need to take, and anticipate the lovely people I will encounter. I can't imagine the horror of seeing very sick patients with Cholera. I want to be a servant and an encourager. I want to bring hope.

If you are reading this, would you de-lurk? I would love to know if someone, anyone, is out there, reading my personal stories and to know that you haven't forgotten Haiti. Leave a quick comment. I could care less about growing a blog and getting readers. But, if you are there, and care about my story, I'll continue to write. :)

800,000 people still live in tent shelters. 10% of the rubble has been removed. Cholera has killed 3,600, the number goes up daily. There is much to be done in Haiti.

NEXT UP: Please come back to hear a wonderful story about my dear Haitian friend, Marc. He felt God had forgotten him, he was hopeless, helpless, and alone. But God found him and changed his life.....and now God is using Marc to help the Haitian people survive Cholera.