Hello beautiful people!
It’s so great to be back with another blog post but this one has to be my favorite thus far! It is all about my first mission trip, how Haiti changed my life and pictures for you to see the people that changed my life.
I was blessed and fortunate enough to join my church and Living Water International for a mission trip to Haiti. The trip was initially for September 2017 but the devastating Hurricane Harvey hit Houston so my family and I decided to help our Houston community as we waited to hear back. Our trip was re-scheduled for January 2018. I was a bit nervous about going to Haiti, I was nervous about visiting a different country, nervous about the language barrier, nervous because of all the things I have heard of Haiti through the news and online. When I arrived to Haiti, all that changed. I felt an overwhelming peace when I walked out of that plane. The overwhelming peace of knowing I was exactly where I needed to be at the very exact moment. There was no other place I’d rather be than Haiti. The peace and joy just grew more as the days went by.
This trip wasn’t about me, my fears, my point of view, it was about Haiti and the people we would impact for the week. We stayed in a compound with several rooms. The Haiti team working for Living Water International were amazing and hospitable, installing an A/C for the compound before we arrived, providing us home cooked meals 3 times a day, and even by cleaning our rooms when we were in the community working. We barely had hot water for our showers, the signal wasn’t the greatest to make calls but I reminded myself constantly that this trip wasn’t for pleasure, this trip wasn’t about being comfortable. I wanted to be uncomfortable, I wanted to truly soak in the experience on a deeper level.
What was our Mission?
Our main mission was to provide a water well for a school that needed clean water, provide lessons on how to properly maintain the well, hygiene/sanitation lessons, and share God’s love with the students and staff. We were a team of 13, 9 drillers and 4 providing the hygiene and sanitation lessons for the week. I was blessed to have my sisters and fiancé as part of the team, even more blessed because the 13 of us became a family by the end of the trip.
Day to Day Activities
Everyday we would wake up to have breakfast together at 7am, followed by a worship session before heading out to the school. The school was 20 minutes away but the roads in Haiti were in pretty bad shape, stretching our daily commute to an hour and 20 minutes. When we arrived the first day, the children were running to us with open arms. How can someone show so much love without knowing you, never seeing you before?! That was love in its purest form.
The team was divided by our assigned teams, the 4 hygienist for the week, us, *hair flip* would classroom to classroom sharing with the students Bible stories about Jesus, about love, followed along with skits to make it fun for them. The other lessons taught them how to properly wash their hands, how to properly cover their food to avoid germs and even how to brush their teeth.
The drilling team, was drilling a new well, they were digging to actually find water underground, fresh, clean water! The drilling was intense but so rewarding to be part of and witness for the rest of us. When the drilling team found water on Wednesday, it turned into a full on party! Seeing that water come out splashing through the pipe was everything to us! It was like we had never seen water before.
To celebrate the closing of the trip, we had a dedication service for the well, dedicating it to God, to the school and the families that will forever be changed by that moment. The students in the school had plays and song prepared for us on Friday. It was perfect ❤
The Best Part
I arrived to Haiti a bit nervous, a bit shy but left Haiti with so much love, new friends and an experience I will never forget. The memories made in Haiti will forever be with me, I will always uplift Haiti, I will not allow for anyone around me to discredit this country. Sure, it’s a poor country with in need of a lot of financial help but what they lack they have in love. The love we received in Haiti was more than we imagined we would receive. The amount of joy and smiles I had should have left a permanent smile on my face LOL
My life was changed more than the students in Haiti will ever know. They changed my life, my perspective on life, actually.
In the United States we are used to this 9-5 schedule, the hustle and bustle of the day to day activities and we forget to live. We forget that memories matter, making time for what matters truly changes the quality of our lives. I learned that no amount of money and/or opportunities we may gain from being in this country, it cannot provide me with true happiness only I can provide that to myself with being more present, being more in the moment.
I challenge you to:
turn your phone off from time to time
be uncomfortable from time to time
live to your fullest potential
Give more to others than you give yourself
the feeling is even sweeter.
Allow God to enter your life, you will never be the same
Challenge yourself to do things you never thought you could do.
I could talk about Haiti, about this trip, about the children, about my team, about the Living Water Staff for daaaayysss but ain’t nobody got time for that right!? Haha
I hope this post has inspired you to step outside the box, forget there is even a box, toss that box! There are no walls blocking you now, do something that will forever change your life. You may not be for going to a missions trip out of the country but you can still change lives within your community, in your state, in your community, in your family.
Check out some of the images we shot: