I have been praying for years to go on an international mission trip. This past week I was able to accomplish that dream to serve in a country I wasn’t living in at the time. In the past, we have served as a family in Venezuela and the Dominican Republic while David, my husband, was managing baseball there. It was always a comfortable situation knowing the culture and speaking the language. This trip would be different. I have never been to Haiti and don’t speak Creole.
Preparing for the trip I spent a lot of time praying for what we would encounter, the poverty, the lack of hope and joy, the lack of hygiene, the sickness. I wanted God to show me what I needed to see, feel and experience. I prayed a prayer for God to break my heart for the things that break his, a famous prayer of Samaritan’s Purse and World Vision creator, Bob Pierce. I got what I asked for but was amazed at how different the answer was compared to what I thought it would be.
I traveled to Haiti with the Pittsburgh Kids Foundation (PKF) to help with a camp, Surf City Haiti, for the children in three children’s homes. Their work in Haiti helps to support their spiritual development, healthcare, education, and to supply clean water to the community. We stayed at the Joshua House Missionary Lodge.
With experience living in different countries and serving while there I had a few preconceived ideas as to what it would be like. I thought I knew what ways my heart would be broken but continued to pray the prayer for God to show me. And oh how he showed me.
If there is one thing I have walked away with is a stronger responsibility to live a life that is as full of hope, joy, and love for our almighty God. This is how the children and leaders of the children’s homes we worked alongside, live each moment. My heart didn’t break because of the lacks of the people in this community but the fullness of the life they live. Because of the amazing work of the EBAC orphanage and PKF this community is thriving. They are thriving because of men and women committing to do the next thing God ask them to do. They support the people of Haiti to make a difference in their country. The love of God is the foundation. The joy to serve is the outcome. I have never served with a group of people among so many difficulties that are thriving as strong as this group. They have God, food, healthcare and clean water. They yearn to serve the children who have been orphaned. They love unconditionally.
God broke my heart. He broke my heart with the joy and hope the Haitian community shared with me. He broke my heart in a way I did not expect. He showed me I didn’t need to pity them, I needed to pity the lackadaisical way I can see him in my everyday life. He broke my heart that writing a check is not the only way to serve others. He broke my heart with a new love for new friends, Haitian and American. He broke my heart to commit more prayers and energy to live a life according to the calling he has placed on me. He broke my heart that I think I can’t make a difference.
My heart was broken. Now I am seeking him to make sure it is mended in a way that glorifies him. I am praying for clarity of the next thing he wants me to do. I am taking that next step in faith allowing him to pull me where he wants me to go.
When has God broken your heart for the things that break his? Was it the way you thought it would be or a new and amazing revelation of God’s desires?
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