Haiti Team Update #2


haitiBonswa!  First of all, Sonia Castaneda on our team wants to wish her hubby Cundo a very happy 31st anniversary today!  Congratulations.  Also, yesterday was Jim and Joy Tucker’s 30th anniversary – so congrats to them!

Our pastors left at 7:00 am to head to the port to catch the flyboat to go to La Gonave Island.  They are preaching at the crusade there tonight on “If my people…” out of 2 Chronicles 7:14.  They will return to the mainland tomorrow morning.

I (Nikki) went to Lifeline this morning for some meetings with Donald Curtis regarding orphanage stuff.

The remaining men on the team (John, Lonnie, and Chad) worked on various projects around the property including installing window fans in Celissa’s house, troubleshooting a broken air conditioner, fixing some plumbing issues, etc.

In the morning the ladies split up and worked on organizing all the supplies for the clinics and children’s ministries and preparing things.

At lunchtime they all went next door to the Lifeline canteen to help feed the children from the village.  (Lifeline feeds about 8000 children 1 meal a day, 5 days a week, and this is just one of their locations).

The team enjoyed this experience, especially Chad, who ended up outside playing soccer with the kids.  He’s our first casualty though – while head butting a soccer ball, it hit his sunglasses, which then cut him right between the eyes.  So he went to bed with a headache and a butterfly bandage, but he’s doing well now.

Amanda has been feeling sick to her stomach today so please pray for her.  We have been babying her and she’s feeling a little better, but still queasy.

Most everyone is just worn out and a little overheated today so for one of the first times with our teams that are always so busy, we actually had a pretty low-key afternoon, with many of the ladies working on cutting paper dolls out for the orphanages and other children, having quiet time to spend in prayer and the Word, and taking naps.

We were getting ready to go on a walk through the village but just as we were getting ready to leave, the typical late afternoon rain clouds moved down from the mountains and opened up.

So we stayed, and moved supplies around under our new porch that started leaking (which was a good thing we were here to move stuff AND see where it’s leaking so that the people who built it improperly can be told to fix it.)

This morning Tina and Lindsay co-led the devotional and Lindsay lead worship with her guitar, and then tonight, Jillian led the devotional.  God is already starting to stir things up in people’s hearts and it’s only our 2nd night.

God always calls people on these teams to use them in a certain way, but with every team there are also several people who either knowingly or unknowingly come here with issues that God deals with and brings great healing to.

There’s something about taking a week away from the American culture and our daily grind, and setting it aside to focus on God, to serve others who have it far worse than we do, and to be surrounded by a team (often strangers at first!) who are encouraging, counseling and lifting each other up in prayer every day.  And it’s already beginning here and so praise the Lord.  J

Tonight Kathy made us spaghetti dinner and then after devotional time, Connie (from Mexico) started giving some of us massages.  And I don’t mean gentle, relaxing massages.

For example, she insisted on getting her hands on me and she found all kinds of tension knots and nerves and she did some deep tissue stuff that had my little audience (that wouldn’t leave me alone, and instead were videoing and taking pictures…Sonia!) laughing hysterically because of the faces I was making as I was in such intense pain!

I will say, however, she is gifted, and she worked a lot of stuff out, to the point that Jillian literally had to get me up off the floor because I was a limp noodle and couldn’t move!

She says I’m in store for much more tomorrow night so I have to admit that I am a little scared…but she said after 3 days in a row of her working on me I will be good to go for 6 months.  Wow.  What a blessing she is…I think.  😉

Kim Snyder mentioned one thing in particular that has touched her heart so far and that was seeing Celissa pause and thank God before drinking a bottle of water.

When Celissa was a little girl – homeless and trying to survive on the streets, a simple bottle of water was like gold to her – so she thanks God for even that now.

We should all be reminded that even the little things like a drink of clean water should not be taken for granted (millions in the world don’t have that luxury) and we should thank God for them.

Tomorrow the plan is to pick the guys up at the port and then go visit an orphanage and minister to the kids there.

Then in the afternoon we are going to walk through the village inviting people to the clinics and revival and praying for them, as well as getting set up for the clinics and revival that will start on Thursday.

Thank you for your continued prayers for this team.  I know they are so very necessary and that God is going to move this week, because I have found out that quite a few of the people on the team almost backed out a few days before we left due to stuff going on in their lives – spiritual attacks designed to discourage us and keep us from coming!  Praise God that He intervened and didn’t allow that and we are all here.

Bondye beni ou.  (God bless you).