Learning to Help the Haitians with the Little You Have

For Christmas this past year Blair tried a new approach for her mom’s Christmas gift.  She planned a mission trip for the two of them – to Haiti.  When the earthquake hit they had to decide if they should go anyway – risking a new unknown.  They did go and now Blair shares some of the struggles of feeling helpless in such a destitute nation…

A dialogue is defined as “a conversation between two or more persons.” (If this is something you’ve yet to experience with Abba God I highly recommend it!) This specific dialogue took place as I sat in the back of a truck for hours on the roads in Port au Prince, Leogane, and Petit Goave, Haiti. My eyes were astonished as there were tent cities as far as they could see. The pictures from TV were alive and there was more rubble than I could have ever imagined. Occasionally we would slam on the breaks to proceed slowly with caution over the huge crack in the asphalt. A three-story building approximately 36 inches high on my right; a pile of rods, rocks, and wires on the side of the road 15 feet plus on my left. Sweat dripping off my forehead streaming down my face and back as I continuously surveyed the land and the dialogue began.
“God, what am I doing here? Where do I even begin to help these people, your people?” 
What do you have to give?
“We have 327 bags full of rice, beans, sugar, oil, pasta, garlic, sardines, and tomato sauce, but what is 327 bags in the midst of millions of people who are hungry and thirsty and a nation in need of rebuilding?”
What do you have to give?
“I just told you, we spent all day yesterday preparing 327 bags of food and stuffing about the same amount of envelopes with money in it and we are on our way to hand these out.”
But, what do you have to give, my child?
“Well, considering I had zero income in the year 2009 and am currently living at home as a means of survival, I guess I don’t really have much. I don’t really have any money, I don’t know how to build buildings, I don’t live here, and I don’t even speak Creole. So I guess I don’t really have much of anything to give.”
Exactly. But what do I have to give?
“Blessings for those who hunger and weep, for they will be satisfied and laugh (Luke 6:21). Water that leads to never being thirsty again (John 4:14). Eternal life that they may not perish but live forever with you (John 3:16). Every spiritual blessing in Christ (Ephesians 1:3). The gospel not merely in words but made alive in the power of the Holy Spirit (1 Thess. 1:5). Wow, God you have a lot to give! So what am I doing here?” (side note I looked these passages up later, I’m far from a walking concordance!)
Now, what do you have to give?
“Well (gulp) I have been given all of these things from YOU, so I guess I could try passing them along. But how God? I don’t speak creole? We are giving out food, not preaching.”
Look deeper. Do you trust me?
“Of course I trust you! Ok, What do I have? I have 327 bags of food and money, I have time to give, I have a smile to pass along and arms to hold, I have a hand to high five or shake, I have the ability to pray and intercede on behalf of everyone I see and every tent city I pass, I have a heart broken for that which breaks my Father’s, I have been called and I am here so there must be purpose.” 
That’s better. So give.
So that’s exactly what I began to do. I began praying fervently for everything I saw and was taking in. I helped our team of about 12 people pass out the 327 bags of food. I walked through a tent city and smiled and waved to every single person I saw. On the inside I declared hope and peace over everysingle person I touched or passed. It didn’t feel like much and I had to fight to not be overwhelmed by the millions that I knew were hungry and thirsty and sick and without anything, but it was what I had to give. As you can see in the dialogue above, I did a lot of the talking as listening to the Lord is still an art I am daily striving to get better at, but I also think He finds joy like any Father in guiding us along and not just giving us all the answers. If the power of the Holy Spirit resides within you…you have something to give! My challenge to myself and to anyone reading this blog is to ask yourself that question: What do you have to give? It may seem miniscule in our eyes, but if we are each giving our “miniscule” part I believe the God of multiplication might just use it to cover the entire nation! 
Today many miles away from Haiti and all the pain and hurting this is what I have to give, a simple prayer:
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13
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