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Wednesday
Jan212015

See you soon (The Father's House, Vacaville, CA)

This is not goodbye, but "a tout a lere", We will see you later.  When asked the question in our final night here on the rooftop, how many of us would come back, every hand raised.  Pastor Mark and Lisa joined us, as well as Pastor Wade and Marilyn as both teams reflected on their highs and low during this trip.  It was almost unanimous.  The high --- the haitian people.  Their faith, their hope, their love, thankfulness, joy, and hospitality.  The low --- us leaving.  Of course all of us miss our families, but the reality is that we cannot simply sum up what happended here to our friends and family who will surely ask, "How was your vacation to Haiti?"  And just like the preparation it took in coming and the leap of faith that many of us took and risks, we must once again, prepare for the potential culture shock, the inability to share what can't be expressed in 1 or 2 sentences, and the fact that some people just won't get that you have returned a different person. 

But our Lord God is faithful, and there is a great harvest back home, who we must continue to share the good news.  And although in the last 10 days, we have gotten accustomed to people being so open and willing to hear about Jesus, that we are already heartbroken in anticipating how people are very different back home.  The contrast of people being receptive when you talk about Jesus.  But in being here, I've gained a new confidence and authority to know who I am.  I am a beloved child of God, gifted to share the goodness He has done in my life; share of the goodness and supernatural power He has done here in Haiti; to point people to Jesus when I or anyone complains about what they don't have or don't like about their life. 

We have been at a spiritually intense walk for the last 10 days and so everyone on this trip will have each other's back at home, understanding that things will never be the same.  And thank God that they won't.  We are lucky to serve at a wonderful church, that I am so thankful for places like The Father's House, that truly are a body of Christ, and believe in the principles of evangelism, service, ministry, and exercising our spiritual gifts.  They offer so many opportunities to grow and for us to walk in our gifting and so I am forever grateful.

The trip couldn't have ended any better with our last day visiting the Hands and Feet Children's Village and then a hospital in Petit Goave.  When the Lord says go, we are to answer Him.  And so in this trip, it has become so easy to hear Him; to listen what He wants you to do.  And Lisa reminded us tonight, continue to listen to Him.  We all have a destination, and we can make up in our minds, no matter what we must go through, just to GO!

Praise God for this experience.  Praise God for fellow believers.  Praise God for the vision of Haiti Arise.  And praise God for my return, with my daughter....see you soon Grand Goave, Haiti.  I love you.  I will be praying for you.  Please keep us in prayer, as well. (Shaunte-TFH)

Wednesday
Jan212015

Final moments......Impact Haiti

Down to our final moments here in Haiti.  We are saddened to go but so thankful for the growth in each one of us during our time here. The team is taking far more home in their hearts then they ever expected and the lessons learned from such a faithful people will last our lifetimes.

Thank you to such a terrific team......for being committed to many hours of meetings, taking time away from your family, the financial committment to come and the time you spent in fundraising.  You made a difference and I want to say thank you.

As a team, we have had the pleasure of committing to drilling a well in the childrens village, supporting the tech school, the church at tapion and supporting a student through highschool.  We are blessed to be able to be part of such a great ministry and watch it grow from year to year. We will commit as Impact Haiti 2015 to faithfully pray through these different ministries here at Haiti Arise and the lives that it will impact.

To Wade and Marilyn, thank you for being such great hosts once again....for the leadership and guidance from day to day and for serving in the capacity that you do here. Haiti Arise is blessed to have you.

Marc and Lisa.....we love you and support you in the vision for Haiti Arise.  Thank you for your hospitality and the opportunity to walk the streets of Grand Goave to speak into lives and have them radically change ours.

To Three Hills and Montana.....we left you a couple things to do.....we pass on the unfinished painting, grouting, tiling, landscaping, etc etc.....be blessed as we were in serving here.

Morning comes early here as we travel home.....thank you to our prayer supporters back home and everyone that gave to the ministry of Impact Haiti.....our lives are forever changed for having this opportunity.

 

Karen  

aka Ms. Bossy Pants.....

(the team says this is a term of endearment....like reeeeally????)

Wednesday
Jan212015

To Our Fearless Leaders, Thank you Randy and Charlotte (The Father's House, Vacaville, CA)

Our team has been truly blessed to have these amazing leaders, Randy and Charlotte. We love you and I would travel with either one of you anywhere, anytime.  Our group thanks you!


Wednesday
Jan212015

The Spiritual Gifts Are For Today (The Father's House, Vacaville, CA)

Day 9 began with our group doing another community visitation through another village.  Our first encounter was with a group of women, two of which were young.  They said that they had accepted Christ as their savior but had strayed and was no longer following.  We prayer for them and had them rededicate their life to Christ. Lord knows that I've falling short many times and have challenges in my walk along the way, but we know that the Lord has a call on our life.  And he never gives up on us.  So it was beautiful.  And as always, we were welcomed by many to come to their homes and pray.  We encountered a young man who we walked up on as he was reading his bible and doing a study.  He was powerful.  And as we asked him for prayer he said "As a follower of Christ, I don't expect my life to be easy."  And it was so profound and mature that he knew and saw that as Christians, it is an honor that we go through devastations and challenges, because God uses us to testify of His goodness and the power He has to bring us through.

We continued working on the various projects at Haiti Arise in the afternoon and in the evening we had bible study at church.  It was quite the animated conversation as we continued in 1 Corinthians 12: Spiritual Gifts. While a few of us were distracted by a geico in the front of the church catching his dinner right in front of us, something prompted my ears as I heard the teacher say "The spiritual gifts were for the 1st century church only.  They were temporary and we can't perform miracles now." WHAT!!!! Hands shot up. Not only from our team but a lot of the Haitians in the church.  We engaged and participated in intense dialogue.  But I think it was one of the most awesome moments here.  Although intense, I refused to allow these people of faith to limit their potential and possibilities.  We have witnessed several healings here and coming from the Father's House intense study on spiritual gifts, the Holy Spirit said, you stand up and tell these people.  Do not leave here without sharing and letting them know that they have access to the spiritual gifts.  So, I stood up, as Pastor Mark laughed and translated, because He knew the spirtual gifts are for today.  So I read Romans 12:3-8.  

"3 For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith. 4 For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function, 5 so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another. 6 Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith; 7 or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching; 8 he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness."

I hugged the teacher when class was over and said "I do it in love.  I love you.  You did an excellent job." I told him that I did not want to let him limit his potential and to not let his people not have access to what we are given to us.  We are to use our spiritual gifts to edify and give glory to God.  So I am thankful and blessed. 

In Jesus Name. (Shaunte-TFH)

Tuesday
Jan202015

Star Log 200115 Impact Haiti Day 9

  Anticipation, anxiety, disbelief are just a few of the expressions on 12 peoples faces'as we unloaded our personal belongings at Haiti Arise 9 days ago. Over the course of the last week there have been many different tasks accomplished from painting, to play ground equipment, wiring, to fixing skid steers just to name a few.  More importantly than the physical tasks are the personal life changes and growing in faith that has become evident on individuals faces and lives.  To experience life amongst a people that have an abundance of faith and joy in the midst of little or no personal possessions. This showed us that our possessions can be stumbling blocks in our life to relying on God.  As we come home the expressions have changed to awe, of the people and their faith.  Joy, because of a deeper walk with God and expectation, of the things to come. It has been an opportunity no one here would want to have missed and all want to repeat.
Blessings to all
Hot Stuff aka Mark 
   This trip to Haiti has been one of "firsts".  My first trip to this country, my first mission trip, my first time sponsoring a child, my first time leading a prayer over someone, my first devotional, my first community visitation, my first blog and my first 3 hour church service where I cried like a baby.
   Hot Stuff and myself have been doing most of our work in the Children's Village in one of the residential units.  We have been hooking up electrical wiring circuits to get ready for occupation.  All circuits have tested out ok after some trouble shooting.
   We mentioned a family yesterday that was in dire need of just about everything.  Today we delivered two mattresses, clothing and some hygiene items and we were able to lead them to the  Lord on ouor second visit. On top of that she was able to get to church tonight in  a wheelchair and she is severely crippled. Our team is now trying to fix the wheelchair to keep her coming to church.
   It is hard to believe that we will be back in Canada in less than 48 hours.  There is so much more we can do here and so much more the Haitians can teach us.

 

Stern

AKA Wayne