Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Thought Provoking Quotes

We are so glad that Christian World Outreach clearly expects us to learn and has determined that our first 9 months is for that.  There is so much to learn and some days just taking a drive is over stimulating let alone an hour of Creole.  It can't be overstated: learning takes time and is incredibly essential.  Since being here there are several quotes/philosophies that prick us and cause us to really consider Haiti and especially ministry here.  We're not sure where we stand on many of these thoughts but we thought you might like a taste of what is daily bouncing around in our heads and hearts - sometimes inescapably so.  Some of them are tough and provide quite the mental wrestling match.  It's all so complicated.  Pray for the fear of God to give us wisdom so that we proceed with confident discernment in His truth and its timely application as we cross culturally minister.  Thank you!

Here are quite a few in no particular order.

"Keep your humanitarianism tourism out of my country."

"Development not dependancy."

"Missionaries are like manure.
Piled together they put off a lot of stink - spread 'em out and they can do a lot of good."

"Haiti's only export is poverty."

"Haiti has to change you before you can bring any change to Haiti.
That's why your container isn't here yet."

"The time exchange here is like this:  What takes a lunch hour in the states plan on it taking a day here.  One hour equals one day here."

"It can be consuming to learn how to live in another country and sometimes missionaries have a hard time transitioning from this to life and ministry in a foreign land."

"Just be.  Don't do."
(Observing and learning before doing something is the wisest approach.)

"Long term missionaries should be willing to learn the language, the culture and engage in relationships or go home."

"When you introduce money and resources into a culture that aren't naturally there
violence is always an outcome."

"Haitian people have style and really like to look nice.
Clothing is extremely important - this is very valued.
So it's a slap in the face to send the States leftovers."

"There is always time in Haiti."

"It is the process not the progress that's important.
Relationship over projected goals."

"Many missionaries are introverts at heart."

"When you stop learning Haiti or you think you have it figured out then it's time to go home."

"Haiti chews up missionaries and spits them out."

"If ministry is about you - it will be poisonous instead of life giving."

"The Gospel must be central in everything especially all humanitarian efforts."

"Be careful not to project your western world ideals as ministry."

"Missionaries have a celebrity-like existence.
Be careful to stay humble and not give way to the temptation of perceived greatness."

"Dignity is essential.  What is it and how do you bring it?"

"Haiti needs business and some pastoral development.
I'm not sure what everybody else is doing?"

"Don't do for Haiti what she can do for herself.  Don't import what is naturally already here."

"Handouts rarely empower or equip.  Handouts strip away dignity."

"There is a distinguishable sweetness about praying ministries."

"Maintaining a consistent devotional life, as a missionary, is like swimming upstream."

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