Saturday, February 16, 2013

Futball after youth group

Pretty much every week after youth group the guys break out the soccer balls and play. Louis (one of the youth leaders) started bringing along some jerseys that some guy in California brought down on a short-term trip and gave to him. He was generous and brought them to youth group so they could divide in to teams better and it would give the game more "officialness".

It was fun to watch.
And they seemed to have a lot of fun too.

Team 1 - The big guys team. 

Team 2 - The little guys team (with a few exceptions). The green shirts were sized more for kids so the teams ended up being a little lop-sided.

Here's one of the exceptions. Jean Philippe's shirt is a bit tight, but he has a good sense of humor about it.

Let the games begin!

And green has the ball!

You can see some of the spectators on the wall in the background. The two to the far left you might recognize.

It appears like a good head shot, but actually he was ducking from a hard kick.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

In A Pinch

One thing leads to the next in Haiti; much of which wasn't expected!  Today there were a few things on the calendar; all of which got accomplished but not in the way we planned.

Let's start with the truck.  After, some much needed maintenance, it got a few defective glow plugs; so it wouldn't start.  Plan B was in the works.  Jason managed to bum a ride with Pastor Bobby's ride to a discipleship group.  On their way there they got pulled over by the police and then the transmission on the driver's car dropped.  Amazingly, they made it to the meeting in time, caught a tap-tap to get back home with time to figure out how to get the truck fixed.  However, we weren't sure how to get a ride to the parts' store.  Thankfully, Makayla's art teacher offered a ride to and from her art class today.

I'm currently low on groceries and had planned to make our weekly grocery run today because Dan and Liz Carl, past missionaries and our advisors, were joining us for supper tonight.  The non-running truck was the dilemma.  Then, the brainiac idea came to have Makson taxi Jason in hopes of getting the glow plugs inserted before our dinner guests.
This made me laugh.  Jason looks so giant.  Today he experienced two firsts (a tap-tap and a moto-taxi).
When it became apparent that we'd not get to the grocery in time we ordered supper from Dominoes, the only American food establishment in Haiti.  In a pinch this is a great service because they deliver.  Usually, it takes awhile so we ordered a little in advance.  Then Jason left for the glow plugs on the back of Makson's bike.  Not kidding - 10 minutes after he left they were waiting at the main road by our house.  I've rarely heard of them being that fast.  I did not have the money to pay the delivery guy  because Jason needed to get some cash.  So he called them and told him he was coming.

When returning home Jason spotted the delivery guy on his motorcycle.  He waved 'em down from the back of Makson's bike yelling, "vini, vini!"  ("Come, come").  The delivery guy followed them around the corner to our house, Jason was able to make the pizza exchange and Makson was on his way.

Unfortunately, the store didn't have the glow plugs we needed.  Tomorrow we'll tackle it again.  However the pizza is in the oven, keeping warm and we're anxiously waiting for our dinner guests.

Staying warm...waiting.
Welcome to a day in Haiti.  :)  It is a place that provides lots of opportunity for you not to take yourself so seriously.  A place for patience to be worked out in you and the joys of not sweating the small stuff.  You get to see the unique ways God provides, enjoy the adventure and laugh at white guys on the back of motorcycles.  One thing leads to the next here; much of which wasn't expected.  Flexible takes on a whole new meaning and Dominoes does in a pinch.  Things do get done - though not the way you planned.
Reasons they might exceed 30 minutes... just pick one.  Watch out for UFOs.  :)
The US Embassy should add this to their warning list. 

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Gunshots and Isaiah 26:3

Two nights back, at 10:17 PM my phone rang. I've been leaving it on and beside my bed at night at the advice of a fellow missionary friend. He encouraged me to have it available just in case someone was in an emergency and needed help. Andrea was already asleep and I was in that state right between being awake and being asleep. The phone rang but it sounded like it was on the other side of the house, when it was actually just a foot away from my right ear.
I looked over to see who was calling. My downstairs neighbor, Spencer. I answered. Spencer sounded concerned and was almost whispering.

"Did you hear that?"
"No. Hear what?"
"Gunshots. Two of them. They sounded close."

Side note: Before I was married to Andrea I barely knew what a room fan was? In our home growing up my mom didn't have fans running most of the time. After we got married, Andrea quickly introduced to me to sleeping with a fan running in the room. She likes the background noise and the air movement. Consequently, we've always had fans running while we sleep. In Haiti, fans take on even more importance. They keep mosquitos away, help cool the room and drown out noise. We had three fans running when Spencer called!

"No, I didn't hear anything. We have the fans running and we're on the other side of the house."
Concern in his voice: "Yeah, there were two more shots about a minute later. The second set sounded a little ways away."
I said. "I'll get up and check it out, Kayla's on that side of the house."

I got up and walked to Makayla's room. It's dark.
I whisper, "Makayla!"
A completely unconcerned and un-energetic voice came back, "Yeah dad?"
"Are you ok?"
"Yeah" her voice sounded tired. "Why?"
"Did you hear anything?"
"Um...yeah", sounding uninterested and a bit annoyed that I was interupting her sleep. "I heard two gunshots," she said,  "and then a little later I heard two more. They sounded a little further away."
"Are you ok?"
"Yeah. Why?"
"Ok, love ya."
She rolled over to get more comfortable, "Love you too."
"Good night."

On the way back to our room I laughed. Makayla wasn't a bit concerned! She acted as though the gunshots that she could hear outside of her window where of no consequence at all! No worry in her voice whatsoever. Her concern was sleep.

This verse from Isaiah came to mind.

"You keep him (or her) in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he (or she) trusts in you."

The next morning I shared this verse with Makayla. God's working in her life and I'm really happy about what He is doing. She laughed and assured me she wasn't thinking "spiritual" thoughts when I came into the room the night before. She said, "I hear gunshots quite a bit since we moved here." She confirmed that she was more interested in sleep than thinking about what was happening outside.

And that's the point I think. It's a work of God, not man's effort. We can't make ourselves peaceful by trying not to be worried about gunshots outside. We trust in the One who directs the path of bullets and controls the mind of the guy who is pulling the trigger.

Trusting Him keeps us in perfect peace.