Saturday, January 28, 2012

Becoming Normal

I haven't written for awhile.  It seems the stories are just not coming to me as readily as they did last time.  And then it struck me as I was in the market last week buying food- dripping sweat, crowded and getting bumped into, bartering over a little pile of carrots, trying not to step on a chicken- this has become normal to me.

It doesn't always feel like something to write home about anymore.  It's just life here.  Which is good in a way.

It should be so normal to care for widows and orphans and the poor that it doesn't strike us as some big story.  It should be normal to pour yourself into the least of these.  It should be normal to spend your days making disciples.  These are things He clearly commands us to do in His Word.  Normal expectations of being a Christian.

Yet I realize that so often they aren't really normal activities for us comfortable Christians in the States.  They weren't for me.  But by God's grace it seems He is making the group and I a little more normal out here day by day, according to His standards anyways.  So I will take a fresh look at everyday normal life here and pull out some stories in hopes that something may stir your heart to be more like Him too.

-We moved my sweet sick widow friend Natilia and her 3 precious boys into a new home.  They were living in a 8 x 8 foot room before.  The boys crowding together sleeping on the hard floor.  Going to the bathroom down by the ocean.  Bathing in the open in front of their house.  Cooking outside.  As God continued to knit their family so deeply into our hearts, we couldn't help but do something.  Some special funds were provided by the recycling ministry at our church back home, and for $450 for the year God provided them a new house.  It has 2 rooms.  It has a small kitchen to cook food.  It has a small room in the back to bathe privately and a simple Haitian toilet of their own for the very first time.  We built bunk beds for the kids.  So simple for us.  So life changing for them.  Such joy for all of us.

The moment we walked into the new house on moving day Natilia began praying, praising
and thanking God for it with the beautiful gratitude she consistently displays that I learn so much from.
Isthmi, Natilia, Carlos, and Claudelle
Isthmi standing next to his new homemade bunk bed. 

-Our little group of amateur missionaries watches as we see God doing something amazing.  He is making disciples.  He is bringing all of the separate ministries together.  He is raising people up.  We couldn't have planned it or forced it, but it is happening.  The students from English class are going to the Bible studies.  The people from Bible studies are going to the hospital and to the children's ministries.  They are leading songs and beginning to teach the children's Bible stories.  We look around and we see them praying with people.  The new well is pumping clean water and it is now our newest location for children's ministry, chosen by the guys from one of the Bible studies.  The Gospel and love of God are going forth in Jeremie.  Daily we each just show up to do our little part, and our hearts glorify the Lord as we watch Him weave it all together and unfold His plan before our very eyes.

 Training those the Lord has brought to teach children God's word using the flannelboards.
Damas, MacDonald, and Junior leading the kids in songs at the Point.

-Two girls in our group have scabies from ministering at the hospital and three guys in the past week have been down for a few days with vomiting and diarrhea.  It's a small amount of suffering, but it's real.  Losing our lives to find them.

Maybe for the first time we're all really becoming normal after all...

"Just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many" (Matthew 20:28).


  1. oh my gosh. This one made me cry :) Love the way the Lord speaks His heart through you my dear sister and friend. I am blessed to walk and serve beside you. Beautiful.

  2. Oh Melis-
    I was crying (Sara style at least- just a "welling" more like, but still) by the 2nd sentence.
    I can picture you there! I can see it coming together and playing out as you say! You are blessed! I am! God is great!
    thank you!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


    Cure for Sweaty Feet