Four men have just left Haiti. They joined me on the first part of this month long trip to build the last homes in the village. These four men and their families raised enough to build 15 bunk beds, complete with mattresses and sheets and provide them to some of the poorest families in the village.
It was truly heartbreaking for them to visit some of these families and see that there was only cardboard on the floor where they and their children were sleeping. There was little else in several of these homes.
It is so encouraging to me to have a team come with me to the village and see that they “get it”. Let me explain. Unless you visit and get to know these families, you would never know what poverty means.
When these villagers tell you they have nothing, it isn’t like my children coming to me and saying that “Dad, there is nothing in the fridge.” There just isn’t anything in the fridge they want. But when a Haitian says they have nothing, it may actually be true. It was clear that many of us brought more in our bags to Haiti for our weeks stay than they have in their meager existence. After providing beds for some of these families and getting to know them, this team “got it.”
There is a certain young lady in the village whose heart is pure and who is following the Lord with all her might. She is the first to help and the first to correct others when someone is acting in an ungodly way. One of these team members, whom she helped during this trip, gave her a US $20.00 bill before he left. She went to Pastor Etienne and handed it to him, asking “Can I keep it or what should I do with it?” She didn’t feel like she earned it. She is one of the poorest of the poor and often doesn’t eat unless a neighbor feeds her. She has never known a father yet her righteousness is well known and an amazing example in the village.
May the Lord use this experience to continue to soften our hearts for the poor and compassion for those less fortunate.
John H Leininger