I am sitting here thinking and dreaming and wondering. Haiti has been on my mind and heart so much lately. I know that with the recent devastating earthquake, almost everyone's mind has been reverted to Haiti, even if only for a moment. However, there is a story behind this for me. I shared about it a little in previous posts, posts written about my previous missions trip to Chuuk, Micronesia. It is an interesting and bittersweet thing; an exciting and scary and wonderful piece of this amazing journey that the Lord is taking me on.
When I was in the airport in Chuuk, saying good-bye to the people who came to see us off, an interesting thing was going on inside of my heart. Yes, it was a true tug-of-war within my heart. The women and children stood in a line and handed us necklaces as our farewell gifts; Mahlie gave me mine. They asked me in anticipation, "Are you coming back next year?" All I could do was smile and say, "I want to." It was the honest truth, and yet I knew that what I wanted was not what the Lord wanted for me. There, in that small airport, on a small tropical island, the Lord was tugging at my heart and whispering into it: "Haiti, Haiti, Haiti". Haiti? I can still see the Chuukese children waving wildly from the window as I passed through security and turned around for one last moment with them, sealed with a smile. My next step was a hard one; it was one of letting go, of moving forward, of saying good-bye. I turned around and took that step.
As I sat in the small airport on one of the bright blue chairs, I began to cry. This could not be the end. God must lead me back to these people some day; perhaps I was misunderstanding God's true call. But I knew that it was no mistake and I knew that it was not a miscommunication. God was not calling me back to these children next year, to this tropical island in the middle of nowhere in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, to this place where my heart fell in love with life and reckless faith ~ where my eyes were opened and where my life was changed.
It has been a long and hard and painful journey, but I have come to be okay with that. Somehow, amidst all of the times I have cried out to God to please send me back to Chuuk; to let me go to Chuuk, because I will go to Haiti too; to give me both; to let me live there again; to let me go back ~ Somehow, amidst all of this, the Lord has changed my heart. He has taught me so much of what it means to let go.
And for this, I am forever grateful. The Lord took this heart that was yearning for something else to yearn for Haiti. He turned my passions in a different direction and taught me how to fall in love with a country before I even lived there for a short time... because that is what I am going to do. I am going to live in Haiti for a short time on my next missions trip. A few months ago, I would have said this with remorse. Tonight, I am saying it with excitement.
The recent earthquake is not turning my heart away from this country. In fact, it is drawing me towards it. I feel as though there is a magnetic field between my heart and this country of Haiti, and I am being strongly drawn and attracted to it. This is only the working of the Lord, because He gave me a complete heart change for which I am thankful and excited about.
When I hear of Haiti as an "island country", it makes me smile. He is sending me back to an island. I cannot understand what the Lord is doing in my heart because it is just too big for me to grasp. I cannot fathom His great love for me because it is just too GREAT for me to wrap my mind around.
All I can say is thank You, Father... I cannot wait for the rest of this journey to unfold.