Today was our first real day out in Haiti! We spent it in Cité Soleil delivering water. Our first out of three stops was on the edge of the coast. Looking out towards the water, mounds and mounds of garbage fit right along with the strange smell we experienced stepping off the truck. People were lined up at the water trucks with buckets, eager to get their water that must last longer than we would like to know. Naked children and half clothed children jumped to us as soon as we got off the truck, wanting love and to be held. For many on this team, this was the first time experiencing such extreme poverty like this. It truly is hard to believe these conditions even exist. We walked along the shacks, out onto open land by the ocean. That land is used to bury people of Cité Soleil who pass away. Looking around, garbage was everywhere and the water was green; however, the Haitians who call that place home did not have the spirit that correlated with the overwhelming conditions. The people here are grateful. They are God loving; people loving. They are welcoming and kind. They are the definition of the word “community” that I would somehow like to replace with the current dictionary definition. Two more stops after that brought more new experiences and new “stretch marks” to our hearts. Tonight we talked about why we are here, and what we experienced means for us. One of the reasons I came back to Haiti is because the Haitians know something I don’t- and I want to learn to have that. Despite how horrible the conditions may seem to who ever is reading this, the PEOPLE are more amazing than I could ever put into words. Their need for God makes their hearts huge. When I was washing a naked little boy with dirt all over his body today, the kids started taking water and washing me right back. Nothing is their “own”, it is everybody’s. The constant need for God and need for other people brings such a joy to the spirit, as difficult to understand that may be. I am certain that we are not here to “help” but to “be helped”. Experiencing this country totally turns what you thought your world was upside down. It makes you question what you put importance on. I makes you wonder why we as an American culture try so hard to be first, when we are called to be last.
Tomorrow we have an exciting day that we can’t wait to share all about with you guys J