This weekend I had the opportunity to bond with friends old and new at my church’s Women’s Retreat. The theme was Cherished, which was so timely for me at this stage in life. About three months ago I was introduced to a new book that focused on determining how you want to feel versus what you want to have. I was struggling because the exercise felt self-centered to me and I didn’t feel worthy to take the time to figure out how I wanted to feel. I finally came up with a list of words and at the top was: Cherished. Then I sign up for this retreat with the same theme! I want to feel cherished and I want to help others feel that way too.
to protect and care for someone lovingly
to hold something dear or
to keep (a hope or ambition) in one’s mind
I think this is why the retreat was so special- we walked away feeling cherished. We cherished our friends by giggling and crying with them, hugging them close and praying with them. We cherished God’s truths in our lives- we held them close. And I also had the opportunity to share my heart for Haiti.
This all comes together so beautifully, because the core of what we do in Haiti is to Cherish our Haitian family and friends. In a society that is in constant turmoil-and constant lack- we create moments of beauty because we want our Haitian friends to know joy and peace, we want them to feel Cherished. This year I saw a new team truly Cherish the children that came to our VBS. They took time with each child, lovingly holding their little hands and faces, looking into their eyes, and telling them you matter to us, and you matter to God! As a child living a life of struggle, and survival, you are not often cherished. Haitian parents love their children fiercely yet they don’t have the luxury of time that we have, the luxury of dreaming for the future and capturing all the moments.
Since that very first trip in 1997 we have worked to share the love of Jesus with our Haitian friends by meeting their most basic needs: nutrition, education and healthcare. We do this by hiring local, buying local, and showing up- year after year, trip after trip. When we hire a Haitian mason to build a home for a family- we bless two families. The mason now provides for his own family. When we hire a Haitian teacher to teach in our schools many lives are changed because of that income as well. As a mission, our philosophy is simply to give 100% of every donation to Haiti- to make the small donation matter.
If you would like to join us to Cherish our Haitian family there are a couple opportunities coming up:
February 2017 Compelled Church Trip
October 2017 Compelled Women’s Ministry Trip
Are you ready?