Tag Archives: haiti

this is where it gets interesting…

this is where it gets interesting…

elicia and all the love that goes with her.

so. today we talked about loving your enemies with the orphans.

we sang some songs about love.

we acted out and narrated the story of the good samaritan.

we did some application vignettes…

this is where it gets interesting.

you see, about a month ago we implemented a “quiet time” in treehouse, where kids are given 60-90 seconds to pray and ask God a question, and then to share if anything was put on their heart.

i thought it would be a good thing to do for the time with our orphans in Jeremie… ask them to ask God something…

but i think this got lost in translation.

when i asked them to bow their heads and ask God “who is my enemy that I should love this week?

one kid stood up and started pointing fingers and naming names. she pointed and yelled “LOUNA…. FALINE…..”

first of all HILARIOUS!!!!!

secondly, i thought, boom there it is. what if people always knew where they really stood with us?

do we communicate as clearly and efficiently as Elicia did?

no one has to wonder what she’s thinking. do they have to wonder about you?

i’m not saying go call out your enemies, i just know God used that experience to remind me how important it is to share…

and oh. man. it was so funny. i wish you could’ve been there.

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My Haitian Posse

my haiti posse. too legit to quit!

you know… when i was heading to haiti… i had no idea i was going to be hoping to be chosen.

you see, when you first arrive, the kids scope out the options… then attach themselves to one person. they choose you.

you don’t choose them. they choose you. kind of like how God has chosen us. specifically us.

so, this is the crew that has chosen me. i’m so grateful because they are fantastic. they are witty, loyal, protective, enjoyable, confident, funny people.

they are quick to understand jokes, even though i know like 3 words of creole so far… they read eyes and faces, and i am told that i express a lot with my face, so that works out nicely for us.

ritchi and louna in particular, like to stick close. and they really like to guard my backpack for me. i wonder when is the last time i had a teenager begging to be my right hand man or woman… or guardian of the “stuff”.

i spent hours today drawing. i drew the name and made a piece of art out of it for any kid that wanted (my friends ritchi and louna kept wanting me to be “fini” so we could go do something else… but i’m really glad that happened today. because to see the face of a kid who has something with their name on it.. in colors that they had chosen… well, they beamed. they carried them around. some of them wanted me to keep them because it’s all they have to give.

never before was i so grateful for my favorite set of Papermate Flair Markers!!! and a sketch pad. OH… how i love to draw and OH how they loved to be celebrated. each moment i spent drawing on just their name, made them the star for a minute.

the team has really connected already and spent good time sharing what we are learning. tyler led a session tonite about how we can serve each other… and the coolest thing is that we not only heard what he was saying, but we already had multiple examples of how this serving is already taking place within our midst. love that! when you start out humbling yourself and looking for ways to be a blessing to others, you have the greatest chance for success in changing lives.

we decided the theme of this trip would be BIG LOVE.

and that’s what we want to share and show to the kids and to each other. nothing is greater than love.

and these kids… i already have BIG LOVE for them. for some reason God rescued them, preserved their lives and brought them to this wonderful place. and for some reason, God chose me and brought me to haiti to meet them… i will be praying for them and love to see the people they become.

the lessons are abundant. i think i’ll save more for later. today… consider who you can serve. and how you can serve them.

then… tell me about it. i love to hear stories of serving. and stories of you. the more i  know about you, the more i have to love about you. bring it on.

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you told an orphan to draw a family portrait?

how do you teach a lesson about “love your family” … to orphans. who by the very definition… don’t have families.

 

You know… i posted last night/this morning… about the lessons i was writing for our team that was going to haiti to use to teach the kids. This is HAITI: the love lesson.

(little did i know that i would decide TODAY to go on this trip. so … two painful shots and some malaria medicine later… i’m headed to haiti.)

it’s so cool because i will finally be able to tell if the lessons i’ve been writing all of these months are actually workable in the orphanage environment. and i’m most excited about this one… because i LOVE teaching about LOVE. loving kids, especially. treating them like real people and loving them hard… anyway….

I’ve been waiting for this one! Erica Ho (our missions expert) has been talking about how important it is that we teach them to love … because He loved us. that they are struggling with being loving … and sharing… and stealing… huh… doesnt sound that different than everyone, does it? but remember, these are people who have lost their parents. they are cared for and loved by the “mamas” but they do not have an immediate family per se. erica and i have been waiting for the chance to teach them this. the truths in the bible about loving one another.

so, imagine teaching LOVE YOUR FAMILY to an orphan. here’s the thing, God is so cool… that He gives me creativity when i am trying to tell His Story… that makes sense, dontcha think? Anyway… they will learn the story of Ruth and her steadfastness to Naomi.

then they will draw a family portrait. WHAT?! how does an orphan draw a family portrait?!

the directions are easy… we will have them draw a picture of themselves and one of the friends from the orphanage… after you explain this: everyone who knows Christ is part of his eternal family… and every friend you have that also knows him is part of your eternal family… so you see, LOVE YOUR FAMILY is really a lesson for all of us.

all believers are in our eternal family. all people who do not believe… are without a family for eternity. THEY are the orphans.

who will you invite into the family?

(btw… in case anyone was wondering, i’m headed to the bball tourney tomorrow… just so i can talk to someone about heaven. pray.)

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#notanorphananymore

long hollow has an orphanage in jeremie, haiti. we send teams almost monthly to minister to everyone involved... another team is leaving friday. they will share these truths.

 

today i got to write some lessons that will be on their way to jeremie, haiti this friday.

lest you think this has not been thought out or enough prep time… i want you to know we have been strategically planning the lessons we want them to have for months.

we identified the most important truths of the Bible… the things we most want them to embrace and understand… and guess what, it’s not NOAH, JONAH, MOSES…

don’t misunderstand me… those are crucial stories, and they do come up from time to time, but we wanted to make sure they have a complete framework.

we have a list of them.

1 – We are Family. we wanted them to understand that they are part of God’s family the minute they answer his knocking. they are full heirs. we also wanted them to understand that we consider them part of our long hollow family.

2. next was THE ULTIMATE JOURNEY. we walked through the Roman Road and the path to understanding our place in Christ and what he did to preserve our place in heaven.

3.Name Above all Names. This lesson happened during the Christmas season so they learned the Christmas story and the significance of some of the names of God, as they related to that story. They received many different gifts, each with a spiritual application.

4.I am Fearfully and Wonderfully Made. We explored Psalm 139 and celebrated how much God loves us and made us unique. We explained that he knows everything about them… even if they don’t know their birthdate or their history is cloudy… it’s not a mystery to God. He knows everything and He loves them.

So… this cover is for the next lesson in the series. This time we are focusing on love. It appears that, like all humans, our orphans struggle with loving one another. We want to help them understand that Christ-followers are expected to love others because of his great love for us. We can only share his story and the salvation he offers if we have love for people. If someone doesn’t trust you… they won’t trust your Jesus.

I hope you will pray for the team for the next week…

think about this for a second: anyone that wants to question the existence of God need only consider that there are orphans that now have a home, meals and are learning about this God that loves them. He preserved them and they have been given access to all that his Kingdom has to offer. They were hopeless and abandoned… and now they have hope, they have people caring for them, and they have us praying for them.

weren’t we all just the same? weren’t we, too, orphans before we accepted his legacy of eternity?

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there’s gonna be one less lonely orphan…

lately i have heard more about adoption than i have collectively in my entire life.

i think it started when my friend ande underwood started sharing with me about his plight to rescue orphans in the ukraine. his ministry, skills for orphans, equips unadoptable orphans that will soon be fending for themselves. it is a crucial and vital ministry.

then i came to long hollow to work with jason underhill… jason and sarah are adopting twin girls from ethiopia. they are delicious and no one can wait for them to get here. at the time we didnt know who they would be…

in our months here we have encountered people that are foster parents to kids whose parents are in jail…

people who are adopting from all over the world… these are not people that can’t have children, these are largely people who have a burden for the orphans of the world and are convinced that God is compelling them to be part of the solution.

then i went to a church service at Christ City Church in Birmingham where i heard the testimony of rudy nasser, a 14 year old boy who was adopted from guatemala at the age of 6… it was intense.

the message that day was about adoption being a vertical experience first, that leads to a horizontal relationship here. the speaker, david nasser, contended that adoption is even more crucial than salvation… for it is adoption that makes us co-heirs with Christ. this thought has pricked my heart and brain.

i’m grateful to be adopted by the God of the Universe. i’m grateful to be in a place where missions and the plight of the orphan is a legitimate budget item. i’m grateful that my church is doing a single mom’s blessing event this weekend.

i designed this graphic for a couple that are going to be selling these tshirts to raise money for their adoption fund. in the process, i’ve come up with a few other designs… and sarah challenged me to make future orphan and adoption tshirt designs available. let me know if you need a shirt design.

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