watching, reading, and writing stories

Lessons from Haiti: The Importance of Relationship

on August 27, 2013

I hope you’ve enjoyed these lessons from my trip to Haiti. This will actually be my last post for awhile. I’ll be on a trip for a week and won’t have much time for blogging. But when I return, I’ll finish out the Lessons from Haiti series. Thank you for your patience! I feel like I’m leaving out a lot of important details from the week in Haiti, but it’s hard to summarize everything that happened into a short blog post. Maybe I’ll have to do some extra posts later about other things that happened, like climbing the hill next to camp and stargazing.

But enough of that, let’s talk about Tuesday.

Day 5: The Importance of Relationship

20130806-093955-DSC_6061 20130806-110009-DSC_6074 Deborah 2 Deborah

This day taught me over and over how important relationship is, not only with other people, but with God. We’ll just start at the beginning. Tuesday morning I began working on my project (the logo of the radio station) or really just priming the walls for the logo. But as I began to work, a little girl who was staying at the camp with her relatives came to watch. It didn’t take long for her to pick up a brush and start mimicking what we were doing. Now keep in mind that it was hard to communicate. I think I’ve said several times that I know little to no Creole. So all I could do was point, nod and say wi, or shake my head and say no. I wasn’t sure how much help the young girl could be to the project, but as we worked her smile reminded me that the reason we were there was not just to finish some project, but to build relationships. And so, to remind me of how much more important relationships are, God gave me a little girl to paint with for the rest of the week.

And it’s not just people that we need relationships with; God is our heavenly Father and we need to be in a relationship with Him. As more frustrations arose that day and we cried to Him in prayer, I saw God’s loving fatherly response. For example, one of my teammates came up to me and told me that the radio station was not transmitting and they couldn’t figure out what the problem was. So we stopped and prayed that God would fix it. Not five minutes later the radio station was broadcasting! I felt so overwhelmed with God’s love and how He will take care of our needs right away and not delay.

That evening we went to another revival meeting at the village church and God broke down the barriers that had been separating us from the Haitian believers. I saw this most clearly through a young woman sitting a few rows in front of me. She noticed that me and a friend were trying to sing along with the music and she started mouthing the words to us and making little hand motions so we could understand what the song meant.

Then one of our team members got up and shared his testimony with the congregation. He told everyone that he felt like he’s coming home when he goes on mission trips because his ‘family’ is in these small remote churches. The pastor said he was trying to teach his congregation the same thing and God was using us to reinforce the idea that we are a family in Christ.

And lastly, we ended the day by sitting in a circle on the pavilion and listening to more testimonies from the group. It was such a good bonding experience that really forced the relationships within the group to go deeper. And the night ended with one team member praying a prayer of thanksgiving for each team member on the trip. He summarized so perfectly what each person brought to the group and encouraged us all that we were meant to be there and our presence was making a difference.

God was growing relationships within the team, within the community, and with Himself. This day was a beautiful lesson in the value God puts on relationship.


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