This week I keep thinking about my time in Haiti in 2012, since 3 of my church friends were just accepted to spend the summer in Haiti serving a children’s orphanage. On our mission trip in Port Au Prince, Haiti we served a community that lived at the speed of love, time was nonexistent which was such a blessing to experience. On this mission trip I experienced a culture beyond my comprehension, and I was faced with the sight of abject poverty Children ran around without shoes and were barely clothed; but nothing seemed to faze them. Their way of life was simple but pure; almost likethe life we are called to live in the bible; obviously minus all of the malnutrition and corruption.
The community leaders of Chadirac were coffee farmers so in the mornings we would help pack bags with soil and plant coffee trees. This was by far one of my favorite activities, I loved helping them and seeing how important agriculture is for their community; despite how different it looks from our ways. The best part of working hand and hand with the Haitians and their children; was it brought fun and laughter into working regardless of the language barrier. In the beginning it was very frustrating to use their production processes because it was very inefficient; but we gradually started showing them assembly lines to process through more bags. Although now I understand that malnutrition and constant heat was a barrier for their productivity, in addition to the strenuous labor they had to accomplish daily. By the end of the week we had planted enough coffee trees to produce coffee for the next 40 years.
I feel the time I spent in Haiti really opened my eyes to a different world, because I went into the experience thinking I was going to change lives but little did I know they changed my life. As Americans we think we live the dream; but do we really? After seeing the hearts of many Haitians and there compassion for us, I began to consider the option that we are the poor ones while they are greatly rich. Their abundant joy came from their complete trust in our Creator and their lives were of testimony of that. This experience has inspired me to continue leading a life that is not about me but about people who are in need. I am passionate about making connections that will in turn affect the way I view the world, because I don’t want to be oblivious to the ongoing need in our world. I also want to be open to other cultures by experiencing them through traveling the world and challenging my own views along the way. I’ve realized over the last few years my heart is set on traveling but I am unsure if this is just a season of life I am in or if it will be something I make a career of—I guess time will tell!