Friday, March 3, 2017
Hope all of you are doing well, enjoying your snowy winter.
Our good friend Sue Bennett arrived today. We are so excited to see have her here in Haiti with us.
You may be asking what do rocks, flat tires, manifestations, births and prayer have to do with each other. Well let me share part of Mike and Sue's day with you. It started for Sue late last night as she boarded the red-eye flight out of Seattle. It started for Mike this morning at 5:30 a.m. with a flat tire just outside our gate.The roads are so bad in the areas we minister that we go through a set of tires every 5-6 months. These tires were 3 months old. After getting our older boys off to school and changing the tire, he headed to Port. When we head to Port we usually run some errands, as a lot of items are only available in Port. The first errand of the day was closed, after the second errand of the day he headed towards the embassy, it took him 1 hour to travel 2 miles, then another hour to travel the two miles back, it was during this second 1 hour trip that he had another flat tire, he pulled up on the sidewalk to change it and traffic had moved so slowly that he entered back in line almost where he left off. There was a taptap in front of him (basically a mini pickup brightly colored that people hop on and off of and use as a group taxi, tapping on it to tell the driver to stop) Mike glanced into the open back of the taptap and realized there was a man holding a women up from behind her and she was giving birth. She has been riding in the back of this taptap in labor while stuck in traffic and the baby was not going to wait any longer. Mike got out of his truck to tell curious on lookers to keep walking and also check to see if she was okay, then he glanced around and realized that if the taptap went up on the sidewalk where he had changed his tire previously then he could drive faster and get the lady to some help, so he told the driver his idea and the driver took off down the sidewalk. Mike's next destination then became the tire store. After getting 4 new tires, he picked Sue up at the airport. There are strict road rules here in Haiti "any direction, any speed, any part of the road", it is always interesting getting out of town. "Haiti is the ultimate defensive driving school."
This is when things really became exciting and we were thankful for your prayer coverage. About 1/2 way home there is a town know for its political oppositions and they were having a peaceful protest. There were a lot of police out trying diligently to keep things calm and let the protesters voice their views, but as Mike and Sue got close things instantly escalated out of control and the police realized they needed to show some force or there would be a full scale riot. So 6 to 8 policemen raised their guns and began shooting into the air. Mike and Sue were only about 50 feet away, instantly most of the protesters scattered and ran for cover. But many of them turned to throw huge rocks back at the police or at whatever was in front of them, including at Mike and Sue in the truck. A friend recognized Mike and jumped into the truck to help him find a safe way out of the manifestation. After a few blocks of traveling on the highway he decided it looked clear and got back out of the truck. In a few more blocks Mike could see ahead that they had overturned a bus across the road and were setting it on fire. Mike sped forward around some trucks thinking he would escape the problem, but could then see some men causing a truck at gun point to stop sideways in the road to make another road block with fire. He then realized they were going to be stuck between the two vehicles and there were more angry men throwing rocks trying to block the road off and a row of tires going across the road, which would be lit. He quickly pulled over onto a gravel road going up a mountain. This took them way out of their way, but eventually with the help of some of the local kids (angels in disguise, Mike said) they found their way back to the main highway. The road was clear and they were free to travel.
Mike said during the manifestation Sue was asking questions and said that she wasn't afraid. I know this probably doesn't surprise those of you who know Sue :) God was obviously in control and He knows who can handle what. We are soooo thankful for your faithful covering in prayer. Tonight Sue said with a smile it was a memory that she will not forget. Please pray that God continues to protect and bless her visit here with us. And thank you once again for your prayers.