International Ministries

Stories from Grand Goave, Haiti - Robin Shriver

March 31, 2010 Journal
This is a story from Robin Shriver, another RN who is in Grand Goave with the team from Vinton Baptist Church in Vinton, Ohio:

My dream has always been to be involved in a mission trip.  When our church started planning this trip to Haiti, it was very exciting.
We started our journey before we ever left Vinton.  God started working in our hearts through the services at the church.  Everything we heard was about giving more of ourselves to show the love of Christ to others . . . to be whatever part of the body of Christ we needed to be.  Finally, the day came and we were off to Haiti.  
When we arrived at the airport, it was overwhelming.  Haitian people were reaching through the bars of the gate, wanting to help.  We had to push our way across the broken street and load our belongings in the bed of the truck that took us to our new homes.
In the back of the truck, there was so much to see and take in . . . the destruction of the buildings, the homeless people sitting along the road, the different smells.
We arrived at camp and started helping right away, many in our group working alongside members of the local community who were building a school near the site of the local Baptist church.  It was breathtaking to see how they just joined together, a band of brothers and sisters in Christ.
God is doing a work in all of us. We came to help them, but the Haitian people have helped us more.
I have never known people to be more loving.  They always have smiles on their faces.  I have wondered . . . if the earthquake happened to us, would we be able to display the same kind of resilience?    
We had an aftershock the second night we were here.  The next morning, several from our team were talking to the Haitian children to see how they had reacted to it.  They said the first thing they did was cry, "Jesus! Jesus!".
Wow!  I thought to myself that is exactly how a Christian ought to respond.  
In our hard times, though, many of us don't respond that way.  We try to rely on our own efforts and we only cry out to God after we have made things worse.
Tori, the nurse here, let me and my friend, Debbie, help her with her medical tasks.  We sorted through supplies and organized the medications.  We went with her on home visits, caring for Haitian people who are sick.
As we walk the streets of Grand Goave, Haitian children follow us.  When you stop to help one person with a medical need, it isn't long before others begin to crowd in around you.
I have known it all along.  I am so blessed by God.  This week, caring for the Haitian people, I have been blessed even more.
Several of the women from the local church come around mid-morning and work all day long preparing our meals.  What a kindness from God!  What a ministry from them to us!
There is much destruction here in Haiti, but there is also much beauty . . . the mountains, the ocean, and most of all the people.  The Haitian people really show the love of Christ and they have shared that love with us.
I will take these memories home with me.  I will try to love others as I was loved in Haiti.  I will pray that God continues to call others to help with the rebuilding of Haiti.  I will pray also that He continues to pour out His love on the Haitian people