These last few days have been good ones since Susana has been doing really well and has not been in any pain. She is eating great and now is drinking enough where they just told me that she does not need to be getting any more fluids through the IV. So, we praise the Lord for the little moments where we can laugh, play, and smile. I love seeing my little Susana smiling. Oh she is so beautiful!
The last few days she has been going to the play room a few times a day. She has really enjoyed this. Yesterday, Isabela and her were both playing together in the play room. That made me so happy to see that.
So, all is good for now. She is eating well. She is drinking well. Her blood counts are all good. The infection is gone. We will be discharged on Friday and then we will be flying back to Asheville on Saturday. Susana will have an appointment at Mission Hospital in Asheville on Monday. Hopefully, she will be able to begin her second round of chemo immediately after that. Please pray that these plans do not change.
Please continue to pray for our family as this ordeal has brought about intense emotions for all of us. We are all processing these emotions in different ways, but our desire is to remain completely supportive of each other all throughout. Pray that the Lord will knit our hearts together more so than ever during this most difficult time. And pray also that we would draw closer to the Lord more so than ever and that He would draw closer to us. We are so desperate for Him.
Yesterday, I woke up early after having a bad dream. I felt the urgency of spending some time in the Word of God and reflecting on His truth. In the process, I just started weeping. It was a safe place for me to cry out my hurt, fear, longing, and ache in my soul. I just wept and begged the Lord to heal my daughter on this side of heaven. And then at the end, I entrusted her into His hands. And then the peace of God was there to sustain me and give me joy for the day. I thank the Lord that we can come to Him with even our greatest fears and pains and know that He hears us and comforts our hearts.
Getting good reports from Fenel (our right hand man in Haiti who is managing things on the ground) as to the ministry in Haiti. We have secured a huge shipment of food so that we can really start developing our feeding programs for orphaned children as well as other malnourished children in the mountains. We are still in the process of getting the discipleship programs under way. We have a friend of ours who is building us some benches and desks for the kids. We will also get some tables and chairs. We should be launching our first group by the summer. I am so excited to know that the gospel of Jesus will be shared with eager young minds and hearts and that lives will be changed for the glory of God!
We also are planning on rebuilding a church in the community that suffered damage in the quake. This is a church pastored by a very humble godly man named Jean Franko. The Lord led us to start helping this church immediately after the earthquake. Jean Franko told me that we were the only people who had come to him to help the congregation and the many orphaned children who were in such great need. Since then, we have provided food regularly to them. We also have done some outreach to the children who are there, including many orphaned children who we are starting to help.
Here’s a funny story. The first time we actually visited Pastor Jean Franko’s church for service was the night that we did the outreach there where after the service we watched Tom & Jerry cartoons with the kids. Anyway, the pastor introduced me that night to the whole congregation and was talking about how the Lord had brought me there to help them and stuff. Then he said that he hopes that we come back soon and that he would like for me to preach some time. So, I nodded in agreement as I always love to preach the Word of God. So, that Sunday, we returned to his church for the morning service. After several beautiful songs in Creole, the pastor got up and shared a short word and a prayer. Keep in mind, this is all in Creole and we have a guy next to us that is loosely translating. So, once again the pastor introduces me and thanks me for all the help and stuff and then he welcomes me….and then he sits down!!! And I’m standing there like “What???” And I ask the translator what is going on. And the translator says, “He wants you to preach.” I was like, “Are you kidding me?” He wasn’t kidding. So, there I was standing amidst all these people who are now sitting there in silence waiting for the message to be shared. I had no idea that when I nodded the Wednesday before about agreeing to preach SOMETIME, that he meant the next time I came. Now, I love sharing the word of God. I have preached many many times, but, you know, usually I am made aware as to when I will be preaching and therefore I prepare a message ahead of time. I have never been put on the spot in the middle of a congregation without any notice and had to share the message. Needless to say, I was sweating in an instant! But, as I first shared with the congregation, the bible calls us to always be prepared in season and out of season and tells us to always be prepared to give an answer for the hope that we have in Jesus. And so, by the grace of God and the leading of the Holy Spirit, I was able to share a message that seemed to bring some great conviction, encouragement, and hope. I’m sure it was definitely not a 3 or 5 point classic sermon, but it was still good. But man, that was crazy!!! I think I should come up with a few sermons that I could always pull out of my back pocket should this type of situation ever present itself again.
Our ministry is in great need of a good used 4X4 extended cab pickup truck, preferably a Nissan, Mazda, or Toyota. We need this so that we can haul food and supplies up into the mountains. We also need it to transport teams. We may have a way to ship it to Haiti at a very minimal cost. Please let me know if you have any leads or possibilities.
Today, I am thankful for His grace that works all things together for good to those who love God and are called by His purposes.