I feel a shift in my spirit since we came back this fall. Maybe it's a maturing, or a regaining of strength and vision after such a long haul last year's struggles and trials. Maybe it's the time of refreshing. I have found I have a fresh joy, a light in my step, a wind in my sails, to do the work God has called us to. But more than this, I can see things with a greater perspective, the enlarged view, the wide lens, so to speak. The scope of all that God has done and is doing through Haiti ARISE, and all over Haiti for that matter, in this past year leaves me truly awestruck. God is amazing and He makes all things possible that are impossible for mortal man. Being able to step back and admire His handiwork has inspired me to strive to do greater, to be more focused in doing only what He calls me to, and not get caught doing more than that. This is completely liberating! All too often, we take on way more than we were created or called to handle. Asher had to do a project this week making a kite with bamboo and rice paper. As I watched him, I thought, it's as if we are a bamboo reed and we can bend and be flexible and hold weight as long as it is held the right way. And like a kite, we can be free to soar. If that weight is not distributed properly though, or more than we can carry is put on us, then the bamboo will snap. I've learned in the last year, as I have had my own personal responsibilities with family increase, how healthy it is to let go and let others take on the things that I am no longer called to do. I have realized as our involvements in ministry and programs grew, those God was drawing to come alongside and partner with us also increased. Where God calls and expands, He always provides and gives a plan.
So, coming to the office each day has brought me tremendous joy as I observe God at work through so many others around us. I come in the gate, greeted by two security who ask me to sign in (yes,even the boss signs in). I park the truck and ask Yvon, our mechanic, to make sure it gets filled with gas. I stop at the flag pole with the orderly lines of burgundy and cream uniformed children and teachers to join in the national Haitian anthem. As I continue on down the pathway to the building, I am cheerfully met by Edzer, the yard attendant, then the three new cooks outside preparing for the school's canteen, and finally into the dining hall to be enveloped in the chorus of "Bon jour!" from all of our kitchen staff. Often, they even bombard me with kisses. All of this makes my heart glad. This is what building a ministry is all about, to see everyone in their place, taking responsibility on with joy. This is what Paul spoke of the church, every part with it's function, making the body whole.
When a work is just starting, whether it be a business, a ministry, even a family, there is a lot of work for just a few people. When growth begins to bring maturity, then the load begins to be distributed as more hands can help fulfill the goals. I feel that is where we are at now. My positions have progressed over time as the ministry has grown, from worship leader, to women's Bible study leader, to ESL teacher, to librarian, to bookkeeper, to accountant, to human resource manager. At each progression, the purpose has been to work myself out of a job and I am satisfied to look back and see it has happened. Today I went through our whole staff list, to compile for our teams to know who is who. Geanne, our secretary and bookkeeper, and I marveled at the number of full time staff we now employ- 38! That does not include part time employees or construction crews. Now I can (and Marc too) focus our time more on overseeing.
I am blessed, refreshed, filled with joy, to begin to see the fruits of our labor.