Writing a blog is harder that it seems like it should be. How do you share what’s happening in a country most people have never been to and really don’t understand the dynamics. (I don’t think I understand, and I live here). I wish I could say that things are always so wonderful and great and that I feel so excited about all that is happening. But the reality is that sometimes it’s not so great and things aren’t so wonderful and it’s hard. I know that life is not just hard here, it is hard everywhere, just in different ways – whether it is living conditions, hunger, no electricity, illness, death of loved ones, shootings, difficult relationships, political unrest, homesick, – they are all real struggles faced by many all across the world. It is easy to say I have learned to be content in all circumstances when your circumstances are good but much harder to be content and thankful when there are challenges.
Contentment – Definition:
The state of being happy and satisfied.
Freedom from worry or restlessness: peaceful satisfaction
The state of being contented; satisfaction; ease of mind.
An internal satisfaction which does not demand changes in external circumstances.
Pleased with your situation and not hoping for change or improvement.
In Philippians 4: 11-13 Paul writes about how he has learned to be content in all circumstances (he was beaten and in jail a lot). “I have learned how to get along happily whether I have much or little. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. For I can do everything with the help of Christ who gives the strength I need.”
I am thankful that God is in control of all our circumstances and has us covered. I think He is trying to get me to really take these verses to heart and to truly trust Him completely in all situations. I will tell you my sinful nature doesn’t always like it and somedays I am arguing and trying to tell Him how I think it should be – how silly is that?
As you know we live in Haiti and in April rented a cute little house. It is great! But you do have to realize there are bars on all the windows and there is a cement wall all around it with barbed wire fence on top just like around prisons. Sometime this can work on your brain.
Right now there is a lot of unrest in Haiti concerning the elections (not that there isn’t in the US too, LOL). This causes many manifestations (aka protests) to happen. Lately they have been trying to blow up gas stations and shooting at hotels and banks. I read the government has beefed up protection around gas stations and other targeted areas. The elections took place last year, but it was decided that too much fraud happened and now they have to start over. Right now we have a provisional president and his term was supposed to be up on June 14th, because we were supposed to have already had a new election and new president – didn’t happen. Now they are scheduling the new elections in October and January, I’m not sure how the new elections will not have fraud involved. If all goes well the earliest we will have a new president here will be February – April 2017. This is a cause of turmoil in this country. As I said there are more shootings, hold ups, etc. mainly scare tactics to keep unrest. Thankfully God keeps me at peace in Haiti and I really don’t feel fear (cautious yes, but fear no) – that is hard to explain but am thankful for it. It’s a peace that passes all understanding in Christ Jesus.
In addition to all the political unrest, doctors and nurses at government hospitals are on strike which leaves many poor sick people with no health care, this has been going on since March. They are striking because of pay issues and poor working conditions.
In June two of the men that work with Ernie in the transition program lost their mothers. Please pray for Manel and Marval as they grieve these losses. Thankfully there is comfort in knowing these women had faith in Jesus as their savior.
Ernie and his guys in the transition workshop have been busy!! They have been cranking out the beds for orphans! Pastor Enoch came and picked up a load of them. We had a team here from Universal City last week that went to Pastor Enoch’s orphanage “The Good Samaritan Project” and put the beds together, among other things. This church funded this project for Pastor Enoch’s orphanage and it was so great to see how happy the kids were with their new beds. There are still more to be made but soon all the kids will have brand new beds, mattress and linens, praise The Lord!!
It was so great having the team from Universal City here and it was fun having Ed and Teri here a couple of days early just to visit. The team did a lot of traveling while they were here praying and trying to see the vision God has for their church’s work in Haiti. They taught about brushing teeth properly and did fluoride treatments on children, helped with the feeding program at Child Hope, put beds together, and visited many different ministries here in Haiti. I wish I could post pictures but today the pictures just don’t want to upload, imagine that – life in Haiti, LOL!
Ernie has also been working on designing furniture for our house with the intention of also making these products available for sale. I am happy to report we have our loveseat, couch and chair in our living room! At least the wood parts, we are waiting on the cushions to be made by another organization. Now he is working on dining room table and chairs. He will always have plenty of work to do. Again when internet will allow me to upload to WordPress I will post pictures.
A wonderful praise was the baptism of 2 people in June! One young man from a group from California had accepted the Lord and wanted to be baptized when we went to the beach and also the Tugwell’s youngest daughter, Ester was baptized. What a great way to spend time at the beach!! God is good all the time!
Please continue to pray for God’s direction in all we do as well as for safety, health and well being.
Thank you for your continued support and prayers for us and we pray you all have a safe and happy 4th of July!