“I thought Haiti needed me, but I found out I needed Haiti,” is one of the phrases we often hear.
Even I came looking to see what I could do for Haiti. I came looking for how I to write and tell the world the things I see happening, the stories of what Haitians are enduring, the ways people can help this nation even if they are unable to leave their own.
As staff we often chat about the misconceptions people have of life in Haiti, below is my take on one of these. Benny Veale recently wrote a blog series
on those we pinpointed beginning with this one.
“Misconception #1: You have more to offer Haitians than they have to offer you.”
We come from our culture with the mindset to do things, to fix problems, to bring supplies. This is not bad. There is no denying the mind-boggling need for rebuilding supplies, food, clean water, medical supplies, etc. The list can go on and on. Many, if not most, of us come looking at all the physical ways we can bless Haiti.
What we miss is that the Haitians have a lot to offer us. As Benny frequently says, “The nations have come to bless Haiti, but God wants to bless the nations through Haiti.”
Haitians know hunger. They know thirst. They know pain. They know all of these things on a level most of us never will. They have nothing, but that means they have nothing to hold onto, so when they surrender to Christ they cling to Him alone.
We come and serve alongside the Haitians and gain a spiritual hunger and thirst. Among those who are Haitian Christians there is a joy and gratitude that leads them to dance and praise for hours, long after I am too tired to move. There is a hunger for God, asking for prayer and to not fall away even above requesting physical necessities, and I complain when another course of PB & J is set before me.
“His desire is that hunger leads to intimacy and His kindness in
revealing it leads to repentance. That then becomes contagious in
families, friendships, work places, communities, cities, states and
God is moving through the Haitians to stir His bride to a place of longing for Him. They have so much more to offer us than we have to offer them.