I began reviewing travel notes from each trip I have made to Haiti. The following notes were written in November, 2014 on my sixth trip to Haiti. I have learned an immeasurable amount since that time. My heart has not changed. With total transparency & vulnerability, I share below the exact words I wrote:
11-5-14 It doesn’t get any easier. Looking into the eyes of each person as we pass through Port. A young, twelve-ish aged girl gives me the sign “I’m broke”. . .twice, never looking away. The inequity of poverty never dims and the horror of it, the pure fact that souls greater than mine suffer while I live in such ease. Six trips now to Haiti have made the street front easier? To see, enabling me to see beyond, to see what lies just beyond the stores, the food stands. Filth, disheveled housing, open fires, naked children & beauty – the beauty in faces, the smiles as we pass. I want to ask, do you know our Jesus? Desperate to say that I hate my privilege, to have them understand that I come because I love them, because I have a burden deep within me for THEM. I do not come to feel good, not to show anyone I know better. I come because I love. Does my smile, brief eye contact speak my heart as we pass by? What do the beautiful faces see in me? I lean today on God to make me His vessel, to mold and form me to love and live out loud. Bless this team today, Senye.
11-13-14 Let me, father, not come here only to enjoy. Let me never stop seeing the pain and challenges. But also, let me see the joy, and hope, the determination in the people. Allow me to meet them where they are. Give me grace and discernment, reveal to me your purpose in sending me. Guard and protect my heart and mind against sin and evil. Satan has so many snares. Reveal your words to me, keep me clean for your purpose. Maintain my health, dear God.
Today had begun with a surprise video from Peterson, in Haiti. Joy, dread and disappointment boiled within my gut. Amazing joy to see Natashel and Tikilene’s smiles, to hear their encouraging voices, “Tricia, we trust you and we know you never forget about us, never.” Dread that although that is correct our organization is currently unable to pay their salaries. Disappointment in myself knowing that today is their ninth day without money to feed their families. There are no words to bring you into this emotional space with me. If any of my servant friends have read this far – you know it well.
Beth Moore has spoken of a Place of Further Still. I want to arrive there, to push through and move beyond my place of dread and disappointment. I want to lean in on the pain, to somehow bridge the gap between affluence and poverty if only a smidge. Afterall, a smidge of what America has is great wealth in places like Haiti. Beth points out that God builds from where we are. Right from where we are, even if that means flat broke and not knowing what the next step is. If we wallow where we are, if we walk away during that time, we miss out on that Place of Further Still where God’s hard work will reap a huge harvest.
Please come with me to this Place. We need a team if we are going to bring in the harvest!