Sunday, May 17, 2015

A Holy Experience by Ann Voskamp

And there’s no holding this tattered roar back.
I’m angry at sin that smothers children and selfishness that steals human dignity and apathy that infects the hearts of the comfortable. And I pound my own chest.
I’m angry at me.
Angry at how much I want comfortable more than I want Christ.
Angry at how much I want to forget that grimy boy leaned over a garbage heap, wiping his fingers along the inside of food tray, looking for anything left. I’m wildly angry that I want to forget the struggle of the poor so I can pin the next pretty idea on Pinterest.
I’m angry that I’ve seen and I’m ashamed that I am angry and I’m angry that I’ve seen and now I am responsible. More than respons-able – we’re response-bound. Once we have seen the poor, we are responsible — we will make a response. As long as your heart is beating, there’s no such thing as unresponsive. We all look into the face of the poor and it’s either Yes, I will help. Or no, I won’t.
There’s no getting off the hook.
Faith cannot have a non-response. 
We’re either responding with indifference or with intercession, either with apathy or aid.
You can’t look into the face of the poor and just plead the fifth amendment. Your life is always your answer.
I feel sick that I feel so angry. 
Sick that I want to Pin with abandon, that I don’t want to be a witnessthat I want someone else be an uncomfortable voice for the poor.Sick that six weeks from now I can grow cold and forget. I have.
Why do Christians make their lives tell all these half-truths? 
On Tuesday, when I wake up on the farm, my throat is sore. I feel like I’ve lost my voice. I feel like my heart is sore.
What do you say in the face of disparity that defies words?
It’s 708 miles from Port Au Prince, Haiti to Miami, Florida – less distance than the length of the state of Texas.
From a city with no sewer system — where every night workers scoop out latrines with buckets and dump the sewage of its 3 million into open, garbage choked ditches cutting through the city – to not only what Forbes named the cleanest city, but the richest city in the United States of America.
The flight isn’t an hour and a half. In ninety minutes, taxing down the runway, we leave the tarped and twigged shacks of people earning less than $750 a year — to suburban McMansions where the average family earns $52,000.
How long can you walk around feeling like you have whiplash? Is heart whiplash what you need to wake your heart up?
Why would we rather turn a blind eye to the needy than turn to the needy and be like Christ? Do we like our own wants and comfort more than we want to be like Christ?

Saturday, May 16, 2015

A normal day

Many people have asked since I haven't taken in orphans yet, what does a normal day look like for me.

"Normal days" occur in my dreams quite often. I dream of shopping with my sisters. Going to work and making enough to always pay the bills. I dream of wearing jeans and my hair down. I dream of Target and sweet tea and the radio. I dream, and then I wake up.

You see, where I live, there is none of that fancy, dancy. It is dark. It is hard. It is a third world, and the word "normal" is no where to be found.

I wake up from sweating to the sweet sound of roosters (who havent quite gotten the correct schedule down pat)and where the sun never blinks. Throw my hair in a bun, put on a skirt, grab a granola bar, and head to the village. Easy I know. So I walk outside to get 100 eyes staring at me because my skin is just so ghostly. I walk pass the ladies washing clothes in the filthy ditch water while their small babies play in the dirt near by.
I arrive at Noldine's house, who is told now to just call me "mama". Feed her, give her medicine, and kiss her cheek.

A lady stops by my car just knowing that I want to but whatever goodies she has for sell in the basket on her head.

I check on the orphanage to see how many more bags of cement to buy. We exceed 1,500 right now.

I pass by the girls who can not go to school because of chores and know this is just a term for slave.

I watch as the children walk the 2 miles home from school, playing by the trash burning, not worrying about their little lace socks getting soiled.

The local begger who is deaf approaches me knowing that standing at the ministry gate is his only access to food for the day.

I watch as the women cook and clean and wash and tend to children every single hour of the day. All without pay.

A typical day always involves some sort of voodoo appearance. Easter day 2015, I walk into the gas station to see a voodoo ceremony being played on the tv and 20 sets of eyes staring like it is their only hope to gain. Easter night come around and a group of around 300 parade through the street, dancing and singing, with flags and cows ready to be sacraficed.  "For they know not what they do"
Luke 23:34

This is life, a simple life, but a hard life.

A "normal" day in Haiti is about to change. In a few short months the children will be coming in. I will take on the roll of a mother to 15 little girls and my days will forever be changed.

I dreamed of them, thought of them, prayed for them. And know, soon, I will meet them.

This is just a small idea of what life looks like each day over here. It is my life, and I wouldn't change it for anything.

May Update

                                           This is Valerie. My neighbor and best friend!
I walked outside to where the kids were playing and found a plastic bag with a dead baby bird in it, no taller than 6 inches. They killed it with a rock and will share it for dinner. I know we eat chicken and turkey but this just turns my stomach. I gave them my left over rice to share.
A day doesn't go by where I don't hear "Ellie, I'm hungry"
"Give me neither poverty nor riches, but give me only my daily bread" Proverbs 30:8

Building a brand new house for Doune, who will be one of La Limye's employees in the near future.

Cooking 17 bags of spaghetti for the village. We top it off with a ketchup/mayonaise sauce!
Our greenhouse/shadegarden on the left. The home for girls in the middle. The front gate entrance on the right.
At 375ft down, we hit lots of beautiful, God given, clean water!!! We have tanks to fill 700 gallons. Half the water will go to the community through a spout outside the security wall, and half will go to the children's home.
                                     Whoever picks up trash the fastest wins the prize!!

We received a bus for the ministry! No more walking miles to school in 100 degree weather! No more piling 8 people in our little pathfinder! And best of all no more taxi's for the mission teams!