Thursday, July 25, 2013

Our Awana International Children's Ministry team.

  Prayer Partners: Mike here this time. We just said goodbye to the Awana International Children"s Program training team this morning. We had a great 4 day training conference and felt like we really invested in the New Generation of Christian leaders in Haiti. We were also very pleased to be able to take the team on several ministry outings to other Good Shepherd "Life Giving" Churches as well. They lamented that they were leaving a piece of their heart behind as they waved goodbye to us. 
     This afternoon as I was pondering some of the recent appreciative responses from our Prayer Partners stories that some of you have made, it occurred to me that I should state more clearly some of our purposes for taking the time to write all these stories. 
    1) Yes, of course, we do want to keep you up to date with the goings on of our lives. For so many of you, our friends, this is the only connection we have when we are here. We love you and miss you and want to keep you informed of what we are doing and how things are going here in our new lives in Haiti. 
    2) We want you to know as "Prayer Partners" how the ministry is doing. What our events and needs and struggles and victories are. You are our partners in this ministry and we are not able to do this adequately without you. 
    3) We want to encourage you that God is real, He's alive and doing great things. And some of them are in our very presence here in Haiti. Our daily prayer for you is that you would live and walk with a fresh revelation of the miracle that God has done in your own lives. Every breath you take, every step you make is a gift from God, and we sincerely hope that you remember this. 
    4) It is our hope that these simple stories of the testimony of Gods great works here in Haiti will challenge you, and motivate you to your own calling to advance the Kingdom of God in whatever way that might be. In whatever place He has put you. It is part of our purpose in life to encourage and build you up to see that you, yes you, too have been called to proclaim the gospel of salvation and the favor of our Father in heaven. This is done merely by loving your neighbor as Christ has loved you. You are playing a significant role in this ministry in Haiti, and we want to play a role in your ministry in Lynden, Seattle, Chehalis, Oklahoma, Canada, Norway, Malaysia, ect, ect.............


Sunday, July 21, 2013

Our first July team
Lisa, Jordan and Emily

Hello from Haiti,

Hope you are having a great summer. We have been having temperatures around 96 degrees. It is definitely summer here, even though it is also the rainy season. The rain in Haiti does not mess around like it does in Washington. In Washington it may rain all day or drizzle. Here within an hour we have 1 or 2 inches of water. There is flooding, bridges out and roads blocked. Just one of the many differences.

Two days ago we had such a crazy schedule it was a good thing it did not rain. We were in two of our mountain villages, which can become treacherous when it rains.We started out in the mountain village of Perou teaching a conference on church leadership. While we were teaching a man road up  to the church on a bicycle. He stopped to see what was going on and one of the leaders invited him in. In Haiti they are exceptionally relational and inviting. The man chose to come in and sit. After awhile I made peanut butter and rolls for lunch along with water, soda or juice to drink. This man ate with us. Near the end of the conference he asked for prayer. Mike prayed with him, then asked him to share as Mike and Nathan had been teaching on being a life giving church. The man shared his heart, which was very precious. He stood up in front of everyone and said "I was hungry and you fed my stomach, then you fed my soul. Now I want to know how to have Jesus in my heart." We truly believe that you need to feed someone who is hungry before they can hear God's word. He is living proof. His testimony was such a great analogy to the teaching. God works in amazing ways. 

The team went on a tour of Perou while Nathan and Mike were teaching, which included visiting a sugar cane press. They were able to sample some of the cane juice and chew on some sugar cane.

Next we went to Pass Rein for church. Nathan led worship and Mike preached again. It was a very powerful time. I do not know any other way to describe it. I have no other words, it was and is just amazing. The people in Pass Rein are so hungry for the things of God. They are such joyous worshipers.

After Pass Rein we returned to Marose, where Nathan led worship and Mike preached yet a different message. Mike and Nathan have been challenging the Good Shepherd churches to go out and be the hands and feet of Jesus. 

Tomorrow the first team that is here will be traveling home. Please be praying for safe travel and on time connections. 

The second team we have here will be doing intense leadership training for the International Awana Children's Ministry for the next three days. Please continue to pray for wisdom in teaching and clear communication and understanding. Thanks again for your prayers. 


Friday, July 19, 2013

Chosen for Haiti's pilot Awana International Children's Ministry program


The team is doing great. Yesterday we went into Gonavies and visited another friends ministry. They have a school and medical clinic and they have English and Creole classes. They also have a ministry that teaches Haitian women business practices. The artisan women's business part of the ministry is called 2nd Story Goods, this is where we get the angels, jewelry, journals etc. that we have at our fundraiser events. The products are made by local artisan women's groups and the proceeds go back to them and they are taught how to put some aside for future business and how to reinvest some of it in materials so they can continue to make these products to support themselves and their families. We believe in them and like to support them. We had dinner with them and Emory cooked shrimp, one of my favorite foods. What a blessing. 

Today the team made play-doh for the children. They have also been going to the nightly revival in Marose. Tonight we will have church in Pass Rein as usual and we will have all night prayer and worship in Marose. We would greatly appreciate your prayers for both. 

As I have mentioned before our ministry has been chosen as one of two ministries in Haiti to be part of the Awana International Children's Ministry pilot program. So today we picked up the team. They will start the training tomorrow morning. The first session is more general and will involve representatives from our association of churches, plus a few other churches. We are expecting 60 to 70 people. Then on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday we will have a smaller leadership team of about a dozen receive more intense training. Please pray for the team teaching and for the Haitian's attending. Pray for good communication and understanding. We feel so very blessed to be a part of this program, there is very little offered in Haiti that is specifically for children. This program has the potential to touch the lives of over 1000 children with the Gospel in the first year alone.

Tomorrow evening we will be showing a children's film. This will be the second time. We have been using them as encouragement for choosing right. The first one was to encourage the children to study for the final school exams. Only 5 children were not able to see the movie. And out of 67 children in our children's village, 7 of them were the top in their class/grade. Considering the school in Marose has 400 students in it, that is very good. 

I have some other stories I will share tomorrow. This is already pretty long. Thank you for all of your prayers and comments. I love hearing from each of you. 

Many blessings,

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Hello from Haiti,

First I want to thank all of you for your prayers. So far this week has been very full with revivals at two churches and having a team here also. 

The team has been great, they have spent a lot of time working on building relationships with the children. They made crafts with the children today and they visited the market in Poteau 

Tomorrow the team will travel with us to the village of Perou. We will be teaching a leadership class in the church. We will also be visiting the boy who is crippled and we will be praying for him.  Please remember to pray for the leadership training and for the boy and his family. 

After visiting Perou we will be going to Pass Rein for the revival. We have had at least 22 salvation's there in the last 3 days. We have also prayed over many to be healed and set free. I am still in awe at all God has done in Pass Rein. He also has blessed us personally with some good relationships in Pass Rein. It feels like home when I go to Pass Rein. I really enjoy the village. They are a farming community up in the mountains. They have not had as much rain as Marose this year and they depend on the rain to survive. A week and a half ago I felt like God told me that the people's hearts needed the rain of the Holy Spirit on them just like the land needed the physical rain on it. Everyone has been praying for rain, but that day I felt like God said to focus on praying for the rain, we were having a leadership training in Pass rein that day and I spent the majority of the 4 hours praying for rain. About 3 hours into the meeting we heard extremely loud thunder and saw amazing lightening (we were in a tent) and God poured the rain. It was sooooooooo very cool. God showered his blessings spiritually and also physically in a very real way. It has rained once a day since. God is so good. 

After visiting Pass Rein we will travel back to Marose for the revival there. He is moving mightily in Marose also. We have had salvation's, healings and have seen many people being set free. It has been exhausting and exciting at the same time. Sometimes I wonder what God will ask next, but when I stop and think about all He has done, I know I could not possibly think of or guess what is to come. We just need to keep putting one foot in front of the other. He will give us what we need when we get there. Again thank you for all of your prayer support. 

Sunday, July 14, 2013

We want to thank all of you for your prayers. Our July team has made it safely to the children’s village and enjoyed a fun day with the children. They actually had almost 100 children as today was the official first day of the Community Children’s Ministry in Marose. We have been ministering for almost 5 ½ years to the children here in Marose, through the children’s village, school, clinic, youth group etc. but, today was the first day of our new program. We started this same program over a year ago in Perou and 6 months ago in Poteau and Pass Rein. We also started this new program in Marotte today. Basically it is a precursor to the Awana program, which we will be starting in the fall. We are one of two ministries chosen for the International Awana Children’s pilot program in Haiti. Today we played games, shared bible stories, played sports, and instead of snacks we fed the children lunch. The community children also came into our children’s village and played on our new playground. 
I would really appreciate your prayers for the health of the children. I have another 7 cases of mumps. It would be great if these were the last J Up until now all of the children with the mumps have been boys, but today the first girl came down with the mumps. We really need the prayer covering.
I wrote the above e-mail last night. This morning, Sunday, Mike will be preaching in Poteau. Nathan will be leading worship and preaching in Pass Rein. Please pray for the Spirit of God to be moving. We also start our first night of the back to back revival meetings in Pass Rein and Marose. Again thank you so very much for your prayers.


Thursday, July 11, 2013

I just wanted to write and share some of what is happening here in Haiti. Life continues to be an adventure. A lot of the men who work here just cannot figure me out, I do not fit in their view of what a women does. They continue to not believe me when I look for zuti, (tools). Some will help me find what I am looking for, some just sit there not believing that I really want the tool I am trying to find. It has actually become a fun challenge for me to find what I need in the generator room and use the tool. One example was I had drilled holes in my kitchen wall (they are concrete) and then I needed to replace the rechargeable battery pack so that I could continue with my project, which was a 24" x 36" board that I had covered in photos of friends. It looks like a collage. I asked for the battery pack that was already charged and the first guy just sat there and looked at me. I know enough words that I could explain. The second guy figured it out and by passed the other one and got it for me. Then when I was ready to hang it, I needed two short screws (vis). Screws are hard to find in Haiti, they still use nails for everything. When one of the guys who helps came to see exactly what I needed, he looked at the board, the wall, the photos, the wire and said you already did all this work? Women here do traditional women's work, they don't climb 8 foot ladders to get on top of 40' containers to get a good photo of the orphanage. They don't know that you shut the water off before working on plumbing, they don't go into the lumber area and pick out the piece of plywood they want. Anyway enough about me. I hope some of my stories make you smile. It is a different world down here and God has been amazing.

I could use prayer for learning the language. I have over 300 words down now and there have been many times that I say something in creole and I get the wrong answer or I am stared at like I am from outer space. The last couple of weeks the translator that teaches me creole has been in another room or around the corner when I have tried to communicate with someone and has said that I have said the question or statement great, the problem is not me. So now I guess I need to get past the hurdle of disbelief that I can speak:) I also need to greatly build my vocabulary.

We want to thank all of you for your prayers for the revival in Marose also. The revival is still going on, the people are so hungry they are coming to church every night, sometimes for 2 1/2 hours, sometimes for as long 5 1/2 hours. God has been really moving hearts. We have seen many healings and salvation's. Last night there were three major healings, and tonight seemed to be leadership and salvation night. God is just so amazing.

We are starting 43 nights of revival in Pass Rein, although they haven't stopped meeting nightly yet, but the focus is different. So for a bit the two revivals will be back to back. Pass Rein will start at 5'oclock and Marose 8:30 or 9 o'clock. Please once again lift these two churches up to God. Continue to pray for the madame's heart in Pass Rein also. We are really enjoying the relationships we are developing with the community of Pass Rein.

The July team is flying as I write this note, so please continue to pray for them, they will arrive in Port-au-Prince around noon tomorrow and then travel north to our children's village. Mike is spending the night half way to Port-au-Prince, he will pick up the team tomorrow. Nathan  preached and did worship in Marose and he and I are holding down the children's village here. God has been amazing in working transitions and adjustments out. In some ways it feels like we have lived here for years. It feels like home. I am listening to a Newsboy song called "Lord, I don't know" It talks about the peace that passes understanding and that He holds us in His presence. I know these words taken from scripture to be true. Again, thank you to all who have been praying for us.


Monday, July 8, 2013

Bob and Rose's "Mission Store"

Hope your are all enjoying your summer. One of the last events Mike attended before returning to Haiti was the "Mission Store" put on by Bob and Rose. It was a great success. Mike enjoyed being able to connect with many friends during the "Mission Store". I will try and put a photo of the evening on the blog. As usual, you can access the blog by clicking on the link below. 
God is still really moving in Pass Rien. Last Friday was "all night prayer and worship", Pastor Nathan felt like God wanted him to preach about walking with Christ as a life style. On Sunday morning Mike had prepared a message, but during worship he felt like God asked him to share that God was challenging the people to move forward and "not go back." He shared the story of Moses leading the people out of slavery and bondage in Egypt. He shared that God let the Red Sea wash over their sins and their enemies. He also supplied all their needs as they journeyed with Him. But not all the people went, and some of the people wanted to go back. Just like God's people coming out of Egypt, God wanted the people of Pass Rien to follow Him and not return back to their old ways. God moved Sunday and many made commitments to follow Jesus and to continue to walk strong. Mike never did get to the message that he prepared, another time and place :)

God is also really moving in Marose. What started as a one week revival is now beginning its fourth week. This week Mike will be preaching Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Please pray that God gives him direction as he 
teaches, and pray for the peoples hunger and thirst to be increased for Jesus. 

On Thursday we have a small team arriving. Please pray for  safe travel and for their time here in Haiti. I believe that when teams come, it is not so much what they can do for Haiti, but more about what God is trying to teach or show them while they are here in Haiti. I believe that God uses the time we set aside for Him to speak to us and give us direction and clarity as to what He created us for. So thank you for your prayers ahead of time.