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Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Coming home, yet sad to leave... by Deborah

Today was a busy day for Lori and Kate. They did clinic work for the local people at Saint Marc again, similar to yesterday. There were many people that wanted to be seen, but unfortunately we were not able to see them all because of time. The rest of the team went to Bev and Al's place where we played Red Light/Green Light, did bubbles, colored and sang songs with the kids there. Tim and Ben accompanied the songs on their guitar and trumpet. The kids also had fun attemping to play on their instruments. Later on we took a walk to the town and visited with some of the people and handed out Bible tracts. 

Later this afternoon we had the sad task of packing our suitcases and getting ready to go home. Tonight, we will spend the last night here sharing our stories of the time spent here and the impact it has had on our life. 

Early tomorrow morning(5 am) we will be getting up and driving to the airport. We will also be bringing Antione and Ruth along with us for their first trip the America. Both of them are very exciting be coming with us.

- Deborah

Last day, so make it the best one! ...Lydia

Well, it's our last day here in Haiti, and there are definitely a lot of mixed emotions here. Excited to see all our friends and family at home, but we're going to miss all of the sweet people we've met and reconnected with here in Haiti. And maybe the fact that we're heading into rather chilly weather compared to what we're in now puts a liiiiiittle bit of a damper on things... ;) BUT, that being said, we're all very excited to bring a little of Haiti back with us this time! Tomorrow morning Ruth and Antionne will be sitting next to us on the plane on our way to the U.S.! I personally cannot wait to see what God will do in their lives during their time here. 

Yesterday the three of us girls (Deborah, Jenni, and myself) went out on a filter delivery day. Though it was pretty exhausting to say the least (the filters weigh 160 pounds and the bags of sand weigh 90 pounds), it was very rewarding as well! Plus we set the record for the earliest being done by getting home by 2:45 in the afternoon! yay! :)

Today started with a great devotional from Tim encouraging each of us to stay strong and be on the offense today against the enemy's attacks. This may be our last day but that doesn't mean it won't be the best! So, off to mcdonald to do more clinics and visit with children (and for me, holding a sweet little baby girl named Elizabeth!) Should be a wonderful day! But isn't it always with Jesus?? ;)

See you all soon! 

Monday, October 22, 2012

~~~ The team has been rather "radio silent" recently... Most likely that is a good sign and just means that they are busy being a blessing and making their last moments of this trip count! 

If my memory serves me correctly, tomorrow (Tuesday) should be the day that they return home to the US... we shall see. Lord willing, all of the details involved will go smoothly and without hiccups.

Please continue to keep the team in your prayers as they round out their visit and continue to spread God's hope and love on the island of Haiti!

As always, I'll keep you posted. :) ~ Sarah Poss ~~~

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Water Filters... What a blessing! by Ben H.

An Update From Ben H :)

All right, so Thursday the three of us guys went on a filter delivery. Ben Campbell learned how to set up the filters. Poor Tim was stranded for a while without water AND his breakfast did not sit very well with him. I delivered each of the filters.

Every house was made out of mud. It was quite the experience to be in such a different kind of area. Before getting the filters, they drank from pretty yucky muddy water. Needless to say, Clean Water for Haiti's mission is a very necessary one here. The people were very excited to get the filters. There were also many interesting little details that we won't expound too much on. (Such as Tim trying to communicate the need to use the bathroom with a language barrier, soccer games, thorns, etc.)

Altogether it was a tiring yet rewarding day!

~~~ Sounds like we will have lots of fun asking them questions about their water filter ministry adventure when they return to the States. ;) Keep up the service, everyone! Praying God has refreshed your minds and bodies today, so you can give your all for Him tomorrow. Remember to smile! :D ~ SP ~~~

Friday, October 19, 2012

Willing hands make work lighter... Friday.

Okay here's another! ;)

Well I know Lori mentioned that her blog post would be continued by one of the guys who went on the filter deliveries, but here I am instead... we did try to convince them to post something, but apparently they need more time to think about it... :P

Anyways, from what I know, it was a really good experience for them overall. It seems that the Haitian Spaghetti they had for breakfast didn't sit very well with Tim. But he seems fully recovered and back to his healthy self after an "early to bed" night of sleep. ;) As far as details... I don't have many, but like I said, hopefully we'll get one of them on here to update you all soon! :)

Our day consisted of cleaning the van, cutting pipes, raking the lawn, and other odd jobs around the yard. Not very exciting but we enjoyed it nonetheless! :) Aaaaaand there may possibly have been more that got wet than the van... *cough*... for more information talk to Jenni... :P

And as usual, Lori and Kate have been hard at work serving the community here through clinics and dental work. They are a constant example of a servant's heart to me, and the responses they receive from the people they're serving are so sweet. :)

Ultimately, we're thankful for all the opportunities God has given us to be of service here, but most thankful for the times we've been able to share Him and display Him in every way possible. And although we know our efforts are feeble to say the least... we serve a God who can use all things for good! May He be forever glorified in our lives and in our every word and deed. Please continue to pray for unity in the team as I'm sure the enemy would love to stop what God is trying to accomplish in and through us. And also for hearts to be changed and renewed. He is worthy to receive the reward of His suffering! :)

Love you all and miss you. We are praying for those at home as well. :)

~~~ This post was sent to me around 3pm this afternoon (4pm Haitian time)... I was out of town, so sorry about the delay. Here it is! :) Continued prayers for them as they continue to serve with Christ's love and a smile! ~ SP ~~~

Thursday, October 18, 2012

When a clean water filter could save a village... It's called HOPE in a concrete box!

The morning began with 6 am devotions and then a gathering with the work group. The men from our trip were all sun screened and bug sprayed so they could jump on the truck at 6:40 to help with the water filter delivery.  

Left the rest of us behind to do clinics, and the ladies had a variety of odd jobs assigned.

They are an good group-- so willing and so available. We feel the strength of the Lord as we are up early and up late.  

This can be added to by the guys after they return from a trip that most people will never see: The people living in mud huts and trying to survive on the contaminated well water in that area. Truly lives are saved by their visit today with the clean water filters.
- Lori

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Wednesday... by Lori

Quite a rude awaking this morning when it was discovered that my phone did not change time. We were slowly moving to rise, and a knock came to the door to inform us that we had three minutes until breakfast... yes, we ran and got in quickly! It is the third time I was the last one in, and I'm pretty sure I will soon have to sit with my nose to the wall for punishment.

We worked a full clinic day at the water project doing medical and dental for the community. The weather here is warm (some might say hot) and yet a very nice breeze came into the clinic windows. 

Many people were busy outside the clinic area from our group.  Keeping Olivia and Alex out of the traffic flow was important--so of course fingernails were painted and games were wildly played. 

Ben H installed the car part that was brought in and finished it in time for a test drive tonight. The family here is very blessed by the way the vehicle now runs. YEAHHH.

Water filters were primed in the morning, and then the colors of pink, green, and now purple(!) were filling the yard.  They will be loaded on the work truck for deliveries tomorrow. The mission yard had become overgrown with some trees and vines, so those were cleaned up.

After all was done by 4:00 pm, [we were taken] down the road by another intern worker [for a] quick trip to the ocean front.

Supper is now cleaned up. Ben and Ben were the kitchen help this morning, and now we are putting together hygiene packs to give out at the clinic tomorrow. We were able to wash some clothes in the washing machine and felt relieved to be rid of that dirty, smelly pile.....for this day. :)

It is a great team, and I am very grateful for them.
And for each of you at home who hold the whole effort up in prayer. It is the strength of our days.
Thanks you,

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Tuesday... by Lydia

Well you've all heard of our rough start... but I'm happy to inform you that today, for the first time on this trip since Chicago airport, our whole team is officially together again! :) Praise God for this victorious outcome! :) We know that it was the enemy's attack on what God is wanting to do through this small group of people in Haiti. But our God always wins the battle! ;)

Our days at Alexandre's place were very productive and also exhausting. ;) Kate and Lori did a fabulous job with medical/dental clinics. The rest of us did some crazy-intense wall moving/brick loading/rock moving/yard clean-up type of stuff. ;P We are all rather sore and tired to say the least, but it was so awesome to be able to help him with his work since he's been so kind and helpful to many other people. :)

Tonight we are all settled in at the Rollings Water Project and, let me tell you, a shower has never felt so good! ;P (It was our first one on this trip... ew I know. :P ) lol. Tomorrow will be the start of clinics here and more odd jobs for the rest of us! With swimming in the ocean for our free time. :D

I'm always so struck by the incredible creativity of our God in His creation here! The view is truly breath-taking in every way. :) Thanks so much for your prayers and support back home! God is truly at work! :)

Lydia (and the rest) :)

Monday, October 15, 2012

Sunday and Monday... Fellowship and service!

Sunday morning, Tim was able to join us! His passport was found on the previous plane. After picking him up from the PAP airport, we went to Michel's church for service. 
Then we took the kids out for lunch, and headed over to Sue's orphanage for a quick visit. Late afternoon, we all went back to the church where Tim shared a message on John chapter 3.

~~~According to the choir kids, they had a fabulous day and really enjoyed their time with the group! Thanks to handy facebook messaging, I enjoyed hearing from some of the Haitian young people how much they enjoyed meeting new team members and seeing old friends. They only wished the rest of us who had gone on past trips could have been there too. :)


Today, the team began their day bright and early, at Alexandre's home in Port Au Prince. Best to wake up with the dawn and get some of the work done before the sun gets too warm. (“Hot” is a word we do not use to refer to temperature in Haiti... it's just “warm.”) ~~~

Lori started dental clinics, while Kate began the medical clinics. The rest of us started rebuilding the wall. We also had Jeff and Fresnel help us. They were great workers! It was so amazing to see how much of the wall was done since we had helped with it during our last trip in May. We are hoping to get the wall finished for Alexandre.

The work that we did was moving the broken bricks onto a truck, driving it around to the back of the house, and unloading it. Also unloaded new bricks and moved rocks. This work is all done by hand, so we are all tired, but happy to see the last part of the wall going up! Th[is was] Johanna's birthday, and we are all looking forward to seeing Ben again. 
- Deborah

~~~I'm told the wall looks great, and they took a bunch of pictures! :)


Ben had his appointment to expedite his new passport this morning. I talked to him around 4:30pm this afternoon, so here is the update on his day and travels. Good news: His passport is all up-to-date and he is, once again, on his way to Haiti!~~~

Ben (with slight paraphrasing): “Today was pretty crazy... but it all worked out well, which is a blessing!
The GPS in the rental car quit working on the way into Chicago, so it took a while to find where I was supposed to be, but I got there. Then, while filling out the paperwork at the office, they told me I needed a picture of myself in addition to my expired passport photo. (Seriously... Who carries around photos of themselves normally?) I didn't have one along, so I went to find somewhere to get a picture taken.

After talking to a man in the lobby, he directed me to a place where I could get a photo taken, so I did that, returned with the photo, and then completed the paperwork for my new passport. Instead of giving it to me right away, I was then told to come back in four hours to pick the passport up. That meant I had to first return my rental car, since it was due at 1pm. I took a bus back to the airport, and spent some time reading for a while. 

Then, since I needed transportation to go and pick up my passport, I got a taxi.
My taxi driver was very nice Muslim man. We had some awesome conversations about spiritual stuff. Then he even took me out to eat at sister's Chicago restaurant, paid for my meal, and wouldn't allow me to to tip him.” - Ben

~~~Such a blessing from an unexpected source... God works in mysterious ways, His wonders to perform. Lord willing, seeds were planted through some of the things that Ben was able to share with his kindly taxi driver and his heart would be open to God's working in His life.

Ben caught a flight from Chicago to Miami, FL this evening, and should arrive around 10:30pm. After spending the night in the airport, his Haiti bound flight leaves early and should land him in Port Au Prince around 8:15am. Praise God for working out so many details to assure his safe and uneventful reunion with the team, and please continue to support the teams ministry through prayer! ~ SP ~~~

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Because they would tell you if they could...

~~~ Ok, here's what I know...

The valiant team of six (Deborah, Jen, Kate, Lydia, Ben C., and Lori) arrived safely in Port Au Prince, Haiti, last evening, and made their way to Alexandre's home where he graciously put them up for the night. I heard they then proceeded to sort through the luggage, while organizing and assessing the baggage situation in the "can-do" fashion that is typical of this large-hearted group. Praying for you guys!

Timothy made good use of his extra time at the Ft. Lauderdale airport by spending time in God's Word, and was in good spirits last I heard from him. He spent the night in Florida, and Lord willing, took a plane to PAP this morning and has rejoined the group by now... perhaps even in time to worship with the precious congregation at Michel's church, if all went as planned. :)

Ben returned to Fond du Lac, WI, last evening around 8pm, spent the night at my family's home (he sure needed the sleep!), and is at church right now. I know he is looking forward to his meeting in Chicago to renew his passport on Monday morning, and is anxious to be on his way to rejoin the team on Tuesday. Prayers that all of those details would go smoothly would be wonderful.

In spite of the overwhelming set-backs, the team has already begun to brighten the lives of those around them. God has shown Himself strong and has worked even the seemingly impossible out for good like only He can. Please praise Him for His faithfulness, protection, and care in even the little details of this trip, and ask for His continued hand of blessing and guidance so that the team can continue to serve Him and others during this mission without further complications. ~~~

Lori, Kate, Timothy, and Ben C. preparing to board their plane from Chicago to Ft. Lauderdale... Let the adventure begin!
As always, I'll keep you posted, and thank you ever so much for serving with the team by supporting them in prayer! ~ Sarah P. ~~~

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Passport FOUND! :D PtL!

~~~ PRAISE THE LORD FROM WHOM ALL BLESSINGS FLOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! They found Timothy's passport!!! He will be continuing on to Haiti after all, on an early flight out of Fort Lauderdale tomorrow morning, LORD WILLING. What a mighty God we serve! :D

Passport is NO LONGER MIA...! God knew where it was the entire time and enabled it to be found somewhere on the Chicago based plane.  Thank you all so much for your urgent prayer that it would be found. God has answered, and this time with yes! 

When finding a needle in a haystack honestly sounded easier than locating a passport in an airport, we are extremely thankful that our Heavenly Father has done the impossible, recovered what was lost, and will continue to work this situation out for good! Moral of the story: God is faithful-- all of the time... We just need to trust Him, seek His will, and wait. ~~~

~ Sarah Poss, serving State-side with the Haiti team <3

Passports... an urgent matter of prayer!

We have had another problem! Timothy has lost his passport. We are now leaving Fort Lauderdale, Florida, without him. He is going to continue looking for it. It is somewhere at this airport. Pray he finds it and can join us

What is even worse is the fact that he had FOUR checked bags of supplies under his name, and they won't let us take them. We don't know what is in them... dental instruments? Rollings' things for the water project? Medical?

We are all very disheartened at this point as we leave for Haiti with two less team members.

Prayers are definitely needed, so thank you!

Deborah (for the team, just over a half hour ago)

~~~ Passports seem to be causing a depressing amount issues for our team as they attempt to begin their venture to Haiti... Two team members down, and they have not even left the US. Please lift them before God's throne and beseech Him for His help... that he would encourage their hearts, give them His peace, and enable Timothy to locate his missing passport so he can hasten along on his way to rejoin them with the sorely needed luggage! ~~~ SP

Once again, the adventure begins... :)

Greetings, everyone!

We arrived safely to Chicago O’Hara airport around 11:30pm on Friday night. By 12:30am, we were hungry and craving pizza and, after Tim's many phone calls to several places, we finally got pizza ordered! Hooray for Dominos! Pizza at 1:30 in the morning tastes quite good. :)

Started checking bags in at 4:30am like we usually do, when we got some shocking information-- Ben Huizenga's passport had expired! He is not able to leave for Haiti with us today. **My heart sank... I never would have thought to check my passport expiration date.** :( The airline clerk at check-in said Ben could wait until Monday to get his passport expedited, but he would have to pay extra for his last minute flight change.

While Lori continued to check in baggage to the grumpy check-in lady, we took a moment for group prayer. A surprisingly short time after that, the lady became more helpful and cheerful. It was so amazing to see her change of attitude toward us... She even offered the phone to Ben to call for his passport, and she changed his flight until Tuesday departure at no extra charge!
The power of prayer could be seen here. What a mighty God we serve!

So now we travel on, without Ben, until Tuesday when he will hopefully be able to safely rejoin us.

Deborah :)

~~~ At this moment, LESPWA's current team of eight is soaring into the beautiful blue yonder enroute to Haiti via Fort Lauderdale, Florida... Members on this trip include: Kate Knier, Timothy Sandberg, Ben Campbell, Lydia Seibel, Jen Edgren, Deborah Easterhoff, Ben Huizenga (who will rejoin them shortly, Lord willing), and Lori Hellmer.

Please lift this wonderful group before God's throne in prayer asking for His continued traveling mercies, safety and protection during their stay on the island, and good health so that they can invest their all into ministering, being a blessing, and serving the precious Haitian people that God brings across their paths!

As often as possible, news of what God is doing in and through them during this trip will be posted on the blog so that you can join them in their joys, sorrows, and excitement as they spread hope around the island of Haiti through kind words, helpful hands, strong backs, and friendly smiles to those whose lives will be forever changed and by God's loving care and their willing hearts. ~~~

Because I left pieces of my heart on that beautiful island... Thankful for the opportunity to enjoy serving with them by assisting their news updates and blogging from the State-side of this mission. ~ Sarah Poss