This year, Church of the Savior and Valley Forge UMC are working in Village de la Grâce, one of the many tent cities in the Port-au-Prince area. Through the building of 12’x12’ tin and lumber homes, it is our hope that the people are shown God’s love in ways they could not have imagined.
When it is time for a new home to be built, the morning of the people tear down the previous tent and relocate the stuff within. Imagine having your home torn down and all of your stuff being moved out in less than 15 minutes. It certainly puts things in perspective for those of us who live in such a privileged society.
On Monday, we were able to complete nearly three homes. Greg ended up feeling under the weather and had Fanfan take him home as we did more work through the day.
In order to build the homes, we had three people on cutting wood, many on building frames and putting the tin on, as well as took turns loving on the kids and playing with them—sometimes to get them away from the work site, as it can be dangerous for little ones, sometimes because we were taking a water break. The ground is leveled, the blocks and floor are set, and work on the walls follows. Four walls, a roof, a window, a door, and two shelves replace the tent that the family previously lived in. At some point after finishing the homes, we pray a blessing for the house and family, as well as present the family with a Bib La (Haitian Bible). We did this for one of the houses.
I was able to make it 10 days in Haiti without getting a sun burn or minor injury. That’s a new record. The area in which we are working has no shade for the majority of the day, so after spending so long in the sun, you start to feel it. At one point, I was playing futbol with some of the kids and all of a sudden one of their heads met my lip, which then met with a tooth. Fat-lipped and red-armed, I was ready for the next day.
Today, we built two-and-some houses again. We were able to bless two more homes.
God moment for the past two days: After blessing the first home on the second day, we learned that it was for one of the worship leaders in the tent city’s church. In thanks, she began to sing in Kreyol ‘How Great Thou Art’. The other Haitians around us joined in as well as those of us on the work team. That moment of experiencing so many of us worshiping the same God in differnet tongues was awe-inspiring. It is a moment many of us will never forget.
Last night’s devotion involved me telling my testimony (read the following post Prodigal in order to read it if you don’t already know it). Tonight’s is coming soon, and I will post the devotion that is in the book later on.