...I met the two widows while walking through the village and nearby hills just greeting strangers and offering prayer and inviting people to the Revival we would be having. Each of these women told me stories of their husbands' death and the hardship of taking care of their children and several other orphans. Their homes once made of rock were demolished in the Earthquake and now they are lucky enough to take shelter under tarps and pieces of tin tied together to escape the rains and heat of Mountain life in Haiti. Neither woman was a christian and the depression and pain of their lives were written on their faces and they cried and asked for prayer from a passerby that stopped to interrupt their day. I told them about my Saviour who suffered and gave His life that they may saved from sin and obtain the promise of a better life, Hope for a Future, and a friend who would not leave them nor forsake them. They both gave their hearts to the Lord that day and showed up for church that Sunday morning with a smile on their faces! I encouraged them to keep coming to church and I would return with help. God would not fail. We would build their children a school and a church and one day rebuild their homes. I returned months later with only enough money to begin the footers for the school and held another revival and a Vacation Bible School for the children. On the last day of service a beautiful elderly woman walked up to me and hugged me and wouldn't let go. She kept staring deep in my eyes, hindered by our language difference, and shaking me. My interpreter laughed and said, "Don't you recognize this woman? She is the widow you prayed with before who got saved!" I was amazed at the transformation of her countenance. She didn't look like the same woman! Six months of prayer and serving the Lord who was filling her with peace and hope had not only changed the depths of her heart but removed the burdens of sin and hardship from her face as well! I laughed and cried and held her in my arms again and told her how proud I was of her and how much I loved her. I took another picture of me, her, and my interpreter just so I could look back and remember just how far God brought her from....and He isn't done yet!
A 21yr. old blind orphan who was kicked out of an orphanage because they didn't have enough money to take care of him anymore. He had been living in a tent for years but the earthquake destroyed it and has been sleeping outside ever since. I literally bumped into him one night and my life has never been the same since. He stole my heart away with his gentleness and passion for the Lord. He came to visit me the next night and sing for me...and what an amazing voice and anointing! My heart had been so troubled that day in Haiti and as i cried, God used Renni to comfort and lift me up. When he began to sing "God will take care of you", the whole room felt the hush of the Spirit and we all began to worship the Lord. My heartache lifted as God used a poor blind orphan to sing to me! Then as he held my hand, he told me his story..of how he wanted an american sponsor so he can have a place to sleep and a family to help him. My heart lifted from my grief now broken for his suffering. I encouraged him that if God would send him to encourage me in my dark hour, then God will surely send help for him! I then prayed with him and sang a song over him and watched him take in every word. Since then through new monthly partners of Hugs From God Missions, Renni now has a home.
The Cross of Haiti...
Is an actual cross that I made on my first mission to Haiti. We were having revival and we would act out the message that was being preached. Each night the crowd grew and grew until the church was full and they were climbing through the windows to watch. On the last night, we were to show the life of Jesus from birth to crucifixtion...and we needed a cross. I walked along the mountainside that day and came across a large hole with two narrow branches covering it...Perfect for a cross! My host family soon found an electric cord from a trashed radio and tied them together. Using banana tree leaves, we then made the crown of thorns. A Haitian man recently saved, volunteered to be Jesus. And as we pretended to whip him and mock him, he dragged the cross throughout the graveled church for every eye to see. That night, many people came to the altar to pray. I was reminded how the Lord the year before had told me to carry a wooden cross through the middle of October Court Days Festival in my hometown. I wondered how i would feel, what people would say? I prayed and asked Jesus to let me feel what he felt . I wanted to realize the suffering he endured just so that i one day might be saved. As i began to walk, the Spirit prompted me to look everyone straight in the eye. Forcing them to make a decision...reverence and remember the cross or turn away ashamed. The sound of the cross dragging on the blacktop road gave warning to its passing and when i reached the final street, I hesitated in prayer. A brick paved alley lined with bars, people drinking, and a live outdoor band.."In the name of Jesus" i whispered and began to walk. The cross began to loudly echo its arrival and to my amazement..the band stopped playing, the crowd parted and cleared the street and they all stood by in complete silence until i had passed like God's hand parting the Red Sea! When i laid my cross down, i didn't feel shame or brokenness like i thought i would. But instead i felt like i had the strength of 10 men and could run to the top of the tallest mountain. And i asked the Lord, why didn't you let me feel some of your pain? That is when He said "I have already bore the shame and weight of sin, you can only carry the cross in Victory." This cross will forever be a symbol of the trials we face but the Victory we have won!
Work Boot Project Success!!
In February of 2014, while the villagers were working for free building our 2-room school, I seen a horrific site that caused me to stop and cry out to Jesus on the mountain top that day. As I watched the villagers work in the hot sun, one of the men stepped over the ditch and I had to turn away to keep him from seeing my sudden tears....the sole of his shoes flapped open and his bare toes covered in dirt, took my breath away. This is a man of God, a deacon of Sarthe church, faithful to every church service we've had, working for free, smiling for a peanut butter sandwich and HIS shoes didn't even cover his feet! I didn't want to embarrass him so I ran to the edge of the village and looked up to my Father in the heavens and cried out for help! The bible says how beautiful are the feet of those that bring forth the gospel of peace, and this man's brokenness became mine. I made a promise that if God would give me the money to buy every volunteer a brand new pair of work boots when I returned, I would measure them and gift them a token of God's love. And PRAISE GOD, when I returned and begin to speak in churches and tell of this sad truth, people began to donate. I was able to return with over 2000$ and anointed and prayed over 80 Haitian men and women who volunteered daily and they got to trade in their busted shoes for a BRAND NEW PAIR OF WORK BOOTS! Thank you to all those who donated and made this miracle of love possible!