As day four dawned in Haiti, the team was very energetic. We got up, had a good breakfast, a great devotional and then packed for the day. We piled up in the back of the truck and headed for Myan. The long dusty road there is full of bumps. All along the way, people smile and give us a thumbs up. It’s clear that Coreluv has built good relationships in the community and the people are excited to see the teams who come down their road. They know that we’re there to help not just the orphans, but the community at large.
When we arrived at the orphanage in Myan, we unpacked and began to prepare for our projects. Kids arrived slowly for some reason. As I went from room to room to check on the teams, I went into one where some ladies were staining the beds the orphans will sleep on. Just inside the door, a three year old boy was sitting on the floor with just a shirt on. He was covered in the white dirt that is everywhere out there. He looked up and you could see he was sad and something was wrong.
One of our team members, who has been on several trips, said, “He told me he didn’t sleep well.” I held his hand, but he would barely look at me or grip my fingers. After sitting with him a few minutes, I moved on to walk the property and see where future projects would be. I checked on the other team who were building shelving in our storage room. They were measuring, cutting and determining what order to do things in with the limited tools and weak generator. Each person was doing their part to make this project a success.
As I walked into the bed staining room, I saw our team member giving this boy water and then some food. He’d ask for more water and she’d give it to him. Then he’d ask for another bite of food. Slowly his demeanor began to change. My heart was touched as I watched her compassion for this little boy. As she gave it to him, Matthew 10:42 came to mind, “And if you give a cup of cold water to one of these little ones who is my disciple, truly I tell you, that person will certainly not lose their reward.” I was blessed to be able to watch that moment take place.
As the teams kept working on their projects, the missionary, a girl on the team and I got in the truck and headed back towards Gonaives. After we got over the part of the mountain the puts Myan in a valley, we pulled over. On a dirt road in Haiti, we used the hot spot feature on his iPhone to connect his iPad. We then used Skype to call Lifestyle Christian School where she attends and were patched into their chapel service. They’re bring a team of students next year and the principal wanted to have the student on this trip to be able to share her experiences.
As we finished speaking to chapel, we all kind of looked at each other and talked about how cool it was to be pulled over on the side of a mountain, on this dirt road, and to be able to do a video feed thousands of miles away to be able to share what we were doing. In a country where many of the technological advances that we enjoy daily have yet to make it, we were able to do that. The concept of video calling hasn’t reached here and would be as foreign to them as a truck of American sitting on the side of their road.
After coming back to town for supplies to get the more powerful generator working, we returned to Myan. The teams had made huge progress. The generator fired up after several minutes of the locals working on it. The saws started buzzing, drills started humming and the work began to move quickly. The 90 degree heat and no air conditioning began to take it’s toll on everyone. One of the guys looked at me and asked what time it was. When I told him it was almost 3:00, his face showed that he thought it was much later. We worked a little bit more when a couple of kids showed up in the middle of the buildings and started throwing a tennis ball.
One guy looked and asked, “Where’s our soccer ball?” I pointed it out and he ran out there with them. It didn’t take long until all of us were out there kicking the ball in a circle. Soon after, it became a free for all running after the person who had the ball. The goal was simply to be the one kicking it. Laughter filled the air in Myan (and dirt!). For an hour we played and loved these kids as the Haitian workers watched us. There was a renewed purpose for the work and our energy levels increased. It was just the boost we needed to get through three more days of work.