Highs & Lows
It can be really difficult to adequately describe what life is like living in the DR. We’ve been here 3 1/2 years now, and the days when you feel like you’re on a mountaintop are extremely exhilarating...and yet other days are awfully hard. I try to differentiate all the feelings and emotions, while praying that the Spirit would lead in every situation that we walk through. What’s clear is that God has remained faithful in every season. In Ecclesiastes, Solomon compares and contrasts, times and seasons that God permits us to be in. Time for work, time to rest, time to laugh and time to weep. Time to invest, and time to walk away. We have certainly had our share of times and seasons, as with everyone, many highs and lows.
We believe God is doing a great work here in Jarabacoa, not just in and through us, but through many others here as well. He continues to connect us with special people from all over the world, which only grows our affections to serve. I wish I could share each and every detail, of each and every story, just to show how good and merciful the Lord is.
Construction goes on every day that there are funds available. Teams from the states are just now starting to talk about travel for next year. We have an awesome team here, who blesses us with their gifts each and every day. Gina, Gian Carlo and Maquina are some of the greatest people we’ve come to know. There is also another amazing family who has really stepped up to the plate as well. Thomas and Esther are Haitians from the Bahamas, with a passion to serve their people. What a lot of people probably don’t know, is how many Haitians we get the privilege of working with.
Last month, we had a “first” that came across our path. A girl came to our gate(which is not uncommon), she was six months pregnant, alone and abandoned. She said she was 19, but she looked not a day over 15. She was literally homeless and basically only had the clothes on her back. She was sleeping at different peoples homes every night(people she did not know), probably being abused many times in exchange for a place to sleep.
So, what do you do with a six month pregnant girl who has no home? You can’t just give her food, clothes or medicine. This wasn’t a simple mercy ministry fix. We don’t have a safe house ready to take in girls yet... and she literally needed everything. So we began to pray on how God would have us best walk along side of her. Of course we wanted to take her in, but we knew, that was not the best option for the security of our family. One night Nate couldn’t sleep. He stayed awake asking God to reveal to us what He wanted in this situation. The Spirit confirmed that we were to build an emergency shelter. At the back of the property our house sits on, there’s a small shower room next to a half bath. It’s for those who swim in the pool so they don’t have to go inside the house. What Nate did was added a small room (big enough for a twin bunk bed) onto the side of the two doors that go to the shower and half bath. We knew that it wouldn’t be done in time for her immediate need, but that someone in the future like her could use a safe place to rest. As far as this girl, after praying, searching and consulting with our Haitian and Dominican friends, we were able to place her in a home, not far from her cousin. This was a huge blessing to be able find affordable housing that would also be sustainable. We want to teach and empower her with the ability to provide for her and her baby!
We don’t know what we’re doing or how to do this. Every day, times and seasons look different. Just when we think we start to have things figured out, God puts other situations in our path, in order to show us that we literally cannot do anything apart from him (John 15:5). In turn, the fruit that came out of this was a little emergency shelter, birthed out of an actual emergency (but really was no emergency to God, because he had it planned all along). Little baby steps of faith, that are preparing us one day for more! The day when there is a refuge of restoration for the women in this country who are searching for someone to truly love them. The love that they will only find in Jesus. We’re so grateful He’s called us to be part of pointing them to Him! (No matter how many twists and turns the road has)