Building Lives: Haiti Edition – Day 3

“Do all things without grumbling or questioning, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world.” Philippians 2:14-15

You know you’re up early when the roosters are just heading to to sleep! But as soon as we got out to the patio, they started crowing in cadence with the dogs barking and the sound of goat hooves on the rocky road out front. They must have smelled the biscuits and gravy (Richard’s request) cooking in the kitchen.

This early morning scenario ushers in to one thing… God had given us a new day. Work day number one… out of four. As creatures of habit, this routine will be satisfying for us. A homemade breakfast on the patio as a team. A 90-minute journey up through the mountains to the church job site in Zoranje. Working hard alongside Team Haiti. Another 90-minute (probably more due to rush hour) trek back to the guesthouse. Quiet moments of reflection. Another team meal on the patio filled with laughter and talks of God’s Works!

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So who was first to the patio today? Alli Morgan has established a nice lead. Now the race is on to see who will beat her tomorrow, but for today she holds the title of Patio Queen! Pastor Andy was debating about sleeping out on the patio, just to be the “first” out there in the morning. But he second-guessed this plan after realizing he would get eaten alive by mosquitos.

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The smell of bug spray, scrambled eggs and suntan lotion will soon be replaced by the wide array of street living smells. Aromas that seem never to leave your senses, but constantly bombard your heart and mind reminding you of the daily struggles these people face just to eek out an existence.

We saw some pretty strange sightings today. A kid with a Santa hat on. Bob was tempted to tell him that Christmas wasn’t for another few months. Two people driving down the mountain road on a motorcycle with a 32-inch flat screen. Dave thought in his head as they rode by, “Hey buddy, do you get EPSN on that?!” And old man with wool cap from U.S. postal service. Todd joked, “I told them they didn’t have to deliver my package to me until I got back home!”

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As soon as we got to the church grounds, we were under way! Busy as bees, Team Gravel got going on moving nearly a ton of stone. Their job was to make a base for the front alter area next to the baptismal tank.

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Team Raise The Roof combined with Team Haiti to start cutting and installing the metal bracing in preparation for the sheet metal roofing pieces. Gerry and Jay went to town as Todd and Melah cut and fed them. John from Team Haiti jumped in to tie them together.

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In the meantime, taking advantage of our new water well, a couple of ladies from the church got started on our team lunch! It simmered on an open fire for four hours! Crockpot times a million! Potatoes, rice and chicken! Yummmmmy!

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Oh boy! Did we get a surprise today! A huge, hairy tarantula spider scampered from a block Team Gravel was moving. We all jumped and screamed like little schoolgirls (yes including the “tough” men we have on the team). But like a flash, Team Haiti jumped into action squashing it dead. That bite would of meant an immediate trip to the clinic an hour away. P.S. Alli and Pastor Andy are terrified of spiders and were nervously moving around the blocks the rest of the day.

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After a long, hard day toiling in the sun, we took a step back and gazed at the work we had done. The countdown continues. Our goal is to finish the entire building by Thursday! We said see you tomorrow to Zoranje and Team Haiti.

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On the cattlecar ride back to the guesthouse, we casted our ballots for the team award of the day. The votes were counted and the winner was… drumroll please… a tie between Team Gravel and Team Raise The Roof! TRTR secured their win simply because they have an awesome name. Team Gravel, well because it is tradition Team Gravel wins.

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Tomorrow is cement and trench day, as well as front porch completion. Team Raise The Roof will continue with their high-flying act! Instead of the troubles or circumstances we are in (construction is hard work. Construction in the heat is even harder), we see that God is doing BIG things here. And we cannot be more excited to be used as the tools in which God lays His groundwork.

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Please continue to pray for us, Team Haiti and for Zoranje.

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