Monday, May 5, 2014

Stephanie

Just a few months after the sponsorship program with Good Samaritan and AWAKENHAITI began in 2008, Jeff and I had intended on sponsoring a new little girl who had just come to the girls home along with Gamaelle who we were already sponsoring.  This new little girl was 4 (the same age as our Brooke), all kinds of cute and huggie and in need of a lot of love.  After spending the week with the kids though, we felt drawn to the 17 year old with attitude.  Not really knowing why, we decided we would sponsor her so we explained to her before we left for our comfy home that we would be her sponsor.  Little did we know just how uncomfortable, yet rewarding this would become.  She was happy but skeptical.
The first few months of living in Haiti, Stephanie was rarely around, had a ton of attitude, and wasn't very kind.  We opened our home to her for a weekend when there was a team just two months into our 3 years.  While she laughed and had a great time, it was evident there was a facade.  Stephanie came to church with us that Sunday with very limited English, but she asked if she could come back every Sunday with us.
Over the course of the following 5 months, Stephanie came to our home on weekends and came to church with us.  Sometimes, I have to admit, I was impatient, I didn't have another ounce of myself to give, but slowly this broken young lady began to trust.  As she began to unload on me the pain, hurt, brokenness, mistakes, and heartache, God began to strip her raw of all the walls and facades around her.  She laid it all out there beginning with the murder of her mom when she was just 6 years old.  She never was able to grieve.  It took months of crying out to God, me praying with her, Jeff and our kids loving and accepting her, our team members encouraging her and making her laugh, and Max and Margarette giving a second chance, but slowly healing began.
She has loved to sing since she was little and those of you who have heard her sing know she can.  She  asked me if she would be able to sing in the worship team at church about a year and a half ago, but it never happened and the truth is, I don't think she was ready spiritually.
Three years together, there were many lessons learned both for her and us.  Disappointments, frustrations, blessings, celebrations.  Many times, I prayed that God would equip me as I didn't have a clue how to help someone through what this child has been through.  He continued to remind me to just love her.
This girl is one determined young lady.  She has since excelled in school becoming the first in the Good Samaritan Homes to graduate high school.  She is in her second year of nursing school learning a ton and pushing her way past 3rd year students in the clinic work.  She is bossy, moody, fun-loving, competitive, beautiful, and healed by the grace of God!
Leaving her last summer not knowing if she was really ready to not have her blan (white) mom there with her was difficult, but God had her in the palm of his hand.
When I returned to Haiti in October, I was surprised to hear she had continued to attend Port-au-Prince Fellowship by herself every Sunday.  She had no family or friends of her own there.  Her English is excellent now and she loves the teaching!  I noticed so much growth in her.
On my visit in March, there was an announcement for worship team auditions and she was encouraged by several of us who have heard her sing to try out.  Part of the try out was explaining her faith and what she believes about Christianity.
I'm so proud to say that yesterday was Stephanie's first Sunday singing at PAP Fellowship!
Thank you to her other sponsor, Kim and to the transition sponsors who help make it possible for Stephanie to attend university, to the many team members who loved her when she needed it most, to Max and Margarette for not giving up on her.  Her story is not finished yet, God is still writing it, but  Praise God for the healing and redemption in her life!

Stephanie (white shirt)






Monday, March 31, 2014

AWAKENHAITI benefit

The AWAKENHAITI benefit originally scheduled for May 17th has been postponed.  Please stayed tuned for the new date!
thank you!

Monday, March 24, 2014

Summer trips

There are a few spaces still available for our July 9-16 and August 9-16 trips. If you would like more info send a pm or email info@awakenhaiti.org

July 9-16
dental care on kids (1 or 2 dental hygienists needed)
physical screening on Good Sam kids
fun day trip with Good Sam kids
extra willing and loving hands needed

Aug 9-16
laying pavers
light construction/yard work
fun day trip with Good Sam kids
extra willing loving hands needed!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Friday, November 1, 2013

Another life touched by Suzette...thanks for sharing Mateo!

"On October 29, 2013 a very special friend of mine went to be with the Lord. This is the second time I have posted this, but there is more I have to say.

Suzette was a very special person in my life, a person that I will never forget! I will never forget the day I went to Canaan Haiti and met her. It is a day that I play over and over in my mind.
When you first see Suzette, you could easily judge her. You could say, "Look how poor she is", "Look how weak she is"...but those statements couldn't be so wrong.
God was with Suzette, HE was with his child and took care of his child. HIS hand was on my friend Suzette and never left her!!!
Suzette had a special ministry and a powerful one. I honestly think she didn't realize how poweful her ministry was, but now looking down from Heaven, I truly believe that she sees it now. 
Her ministry not only touched my life, but changed my heart!!! While meeting Suzette, the Holy Spirit spoke to me and gave me words to speak over my friend. This was the first time that I truly understand the voice of the Holy Spirit.
Suzette, you have truly inspired me with your joy and courage! I don't know if I could have endured what you did. 
Your beautiful smile and our encounters will forever be in my heart!!! I will never forget you and I will share my stories about you to all that I meet! I hope you are looking down on me from heaven my friend and see how great God is and how is has blessed me with such a beautiful wife and family!! One day you will meet them, one day I will see you again!!! I miss you so much Suzette!!!"



Wednesday, October 30, 2013

There's a celebration in Heaven!

     Suzette left this earth yesterday to be with her Lord.  Praise God for the life she lived and for her journey with him.  Suzette was probably one of the poorest people on earth, yet many were humbled during their time spent with her as they witnessed true faith and trust in God.  For all of those whose lives were touched by her faith, we are saddened yet we rejoice because we know she is with her savior!  She is no longer sick and suffering and there is no more poverty. 

2 Corinthians 5:1
New Living Translation (NLT)
For we know that when this earthly tent we live in is taken down (that is, when we die and leave this earthly body), we will have a house in heaven, an eternal body made for us by God himself and not by human hands.
     
     Please keep Suzette's children in your prayers as they mourn the loss of their mother.  Please pray especially for her youngest daughter, Dieuveline as she finishes school and tries to provide for her baby, she is just 16 years old.  As Suzette would request, please also pray for her children to realize God's grace.