Souls in Crisis
As we began to make plans for a trip to Haiti during the month of June, I was preparing myself for the worse. I knew that the area we were going to was going to be a place of poverty and devastation. I had been to Jamaica before, so I had an idea of what we were going to face once we reached the remote mountains in Haiti. Homes, not any bigger than my small kitchen, that several people would be living in. No running water, let alone clean water. No bathrooms or showers. Barely enough food to survive. So much need, so few resources.
When people decide to go on a mission trip it is usually with hopes that they will be able to minister to the people in some way. Encourage them by giving them hope of much needed relief. Share the love of Jesus with them in order to help them know they can have a better life through Him in Heaven. But, this is not what happened when I went Haiti. I was the one that received.
The faith of the Haitian people in the mountains of Haiti far exceeds any faith I have seen in America. They trusted Him for their daily, even hourly, needs. They worshiped as though they had need of nothing. They prayed, fully expecting. They gathered to their places of worship as if they were meeting in the grandest of cathedrals. They loved God because they saw the love and provision of God on a daily bases and did not count themselves worthy.
Upon seeing this I came to realize that we Christians in America could learn a few things from the Haitian people. I came to realize that it is the people in America that are in crisis. With all our wealth and every need met, along with most of our wants provided, we are in a much worse place spiritually than the Haitians are. We are the people in crisis. We are the people who are in need. We are the people who must learn to trust and love God simply because He is God. Nothing more.
While we were at the base camp in Haiti, the Haitian people would gather to the church building, which had no electricity, no air conditioning, no padded pews, before the sun ever came up. We could hear their voices ringing out in praise songs and prayer to the awesome God they served. It was the most beautiful sound I had ever heard that first morning. I thought for sure it was the angels singing. But, it was the people of the remote village who had gathered before they began searching and working for their daily needs. When it was service time at the small broken churches of the villages, men, women, children, people of all ages began to gather hours before time to begin the service. When it was time to begin, their voices would raise in one accord singing praises as they worshiped and rejoiced. There were no long faces as though to say I’m here because it is expected of me. There was no slumping in the seats as if they were there to take a rest. Most of the churches had no roof or sides so there was no protection from the elements; wind, rain, hot sun. They were in their place of worship and were happy to be there.
Going into Haiti I was looking to find those that we served to be in a state of soul crisis. But, instead, I come back to America finding that it is us, here in America, that are in a soul crisis. Sitting on church pews dissatisfied with our lives and the God we say we love and serve because we don’t have a new car sitting out in the parking lot or didn’t have a new suit of clothes to wear. How spoiled we are. How endangered we are because we do not see the state that our souls are in.
Wake up church. We are in a crisis and don’t even realize it. May God have mercy on us.
Rebecca is the Director of REACH for Women Ministries