Sunday, June 9, 2013

summer debriefing project. week one.

so much of my summer has been very fast-paced already, so i thought i'd do a debriefing post every week. so if you grow tired of my life, i'm sorry.

this past week (and a little before that) i was in Bohoc, Haiti with a group from my church. i went to Haiti last year, but but i still did not know what to expect. the area was incredible and mountainous. last year, i fell in love with the coast. this year, i fell in love with the plateau. the way the trip impacted me can be split into three different categories: the way my own thoughts and heart changed, the beauty of the people, and the beauty of my team.

perhaps the largest thing that changed in me this week was my doubt. i have always known i have a hard time dying to myself. the very phrase "dying to yourself" has made me cringe. i have doubted the Holy Spirit's presence in my life and the power that gives. this week definitely taught me that i am actually, through the Holy Spirit, much more capable of dying to myself than i thought. who knew? this week also taught me that God is the Great Provider. i have subconsciously (and consciously) doubted that since i knew what money was and how it worked. through testimonies, stories, and things that happened before my eyes, i saw that there is nothing that i should worry about. 
another important thing that happened in my heart was a growing hunger to serve on the mission field. the intern that was with the organization (HAFF) we were working with was an incredible inspiration and help to me. she took me aside and answered my questions and gave recommendations on things i can be doing now to prepare my heart.
finally, i was reminded of the importance of prayer. especially the listening part of prayer. it is so great to be able to talk to God. but it is even better to know that He listens and that He responds.

the Haitian people are so stunning. they have faith in spite of their numerous afflictions. they have joy-so much joy that they seems to spit in the face of their sufferings saying: "look! i have a light you cannot put out!" they really, truly believe that God is on their side. that is an incredible lesson that i have definitely not learned completely. i wish i could describe every person that i met and cultivated relationships with. but that would honestly be a whole novel.

the people that were on the team with me were just breathtakingly beautiful. God did some great things in their hearts and it was so amazing to watch that happen/be apart of it. my youth pastor went and (as usual) it was great to be able to talk with him all week. my associate pastor and his son were on the trip with us. watching them serve together was moving and humbling. they wept over ailing widows and rejoiced with old friends. my dear friend Cara was on the trip with me. she is a beautiful girl with a sweet heart that has been through a lot. it has been hard to watch the hurt, but some healing came this week that i was able to rejoice in. Sam, Brandon, and Jason, (the three other members on our tiny team) were all such joys to get to know and love. i will not forget how surprisingly well we all meshed together.

i guess i should do some summing up. in short, Haiti was black coffee in the morning. it was rain in the afternoons. it was two little girls walking hand-in-hand down a flooded street. it was a woman smiling in the face of death. it was motivation to live more simply. it was incredible love. it was silent prayers for peace and provision. it was the faithful and the broken. it was grace and freedom.

so yeah. debriefing. 


  1. I hope to be able to come next year if it doesn't interfere with the summer ballet performance