Today was our second and final day in the village of Williamson. It was nice to see these people again and perfect our efforts. I'm going to start out by telling you about the patients. We saw 180 patients which included 13 dental patients and there were 4 salvations today as well. One of them was in the dental chair! Dental hygiene is definitely neglected in Haiti. Many people don't have the resources to take care of their teeth or they neglect to clean their children's teeth out of ignorance. My heart was breaking for the scared little girl getting a tooth extracted today. She screamed her head off. She didn't understand what was happening to her. Teeth are only pulled if its absolutely necessary. Cavities are common and they ultimately lead to infection, which can subsequently lead to sepsis or death.
We worked so well as a team today! Again, we worked with many people from Mission of Hope, Haiti (MOH). Some of the people and translators were new. We started the day asking to change the setup compared to yesterday. Sometimes requesting a change can be challenging amongst the Chiefs and Indians, if you know what I mean. However, Lauren (the MOH leader) was receptive and had the best interests of the patients and the crew she was in leadership over. Our entire team was so flexible. There was no complaining or bickering. We are serving other's and considering each other. It was so helpful to start the day off with a devotional over breakfast related to humility. According to Philippians 2:3-8 we are supposed to "Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross." The reason we were able to implement change, challenge the way of yesterday and serve even more patients was because of this. God lead the conversations and by His grace and strength we were able to consider others more than having things our way. TEAMWORK!!
We all just finished a debrief about todays work in Williamson. We sang songs together, told stories, and shared some of our struggles with this day. How amazing is that?! When is the last time you told a friend you struggled with something? Here's an example: feeling frustrated with the very people you're serving. Well, when the walls of pride are broken down, we can experience growth! We had to step back and consider the reason for their behavior and stop judging them. This is refreshing. Overall, we believe wholeheartedly that an impact was made on this village. We left with confidence that we did the very best we could.
In America, we have children and we expect them to live long healthy lives. In Haiti, babies aren't necessarily expected to live. Some of these people were really sick. Though, many were experiencing minor complications of their circumstances, but you could see the insecurity of their livelihood all over them. There were a few patients that came back today seeking medical care. They took extra supplies and had different complaints this time around. It's easy to look at them with the assumption they are being selfish. That's not the full picture, however. They are struggling. They are scared and they need our support! They live in the dirt. Their children eat dirt because they have no other food and their bodies are craving nutrients. It's heartbreaking. What's worse is the people think it's normal. Women give their children (most of them girls) to families who have more money as a trade for their labor. The children become servants and in return the new family will feed and raise them. The children are often abused in a variety of ways. Poverty leads to desperate actions and crimes at times. We need to be bold and serve, no matter how small.
We hope you enjoy the beautiful pictures of them. The team thoroughly enjoyed spending time with each patient and hope to do more the next time around.. We prayed with them, blew bubbles, played soccer, supported their business, played hand clapping games, empowered them with education, and made them smile. We did this only through God's strength and love. Oh, shout out to our interpreters, by the way! We are so very blessed to have them helping us. Without their communication we would be lost.
The people in Haiti are changing us and changing you! Don't be afraid to listen to the Holy Spirit in doing something that makes you uncomfortable. Thank you so much for praying with and for us! We love you!
Technical difficulties tonight with the blog so pictures will be up tomorrow. Thank you!