1: You get to rock the Caribbean! Don’t you think Heaven may be a bit like the Caribbean, only with gold streets and no sea and… just go with me here. Yesterday I was rocking in a chair on a front porch, sipping some chilled and talking smack with my good friend Bill. Admittedly it was between installing a washing machine using a gas valve – and cleaning out the house drain. But still, we were rocking in the Caribbean!
2. You connect with believers from around the world. At the English-speaking church you meet believers from other mission’s trips from almost anywhere. Here at Maranatha Children’s home we have close to 40 workers from different backgrounds and churches. The High School and college aged kids who give up a summer of fun in the states for months of service to others in Haiti are amazing. Byron and Shelley, who chose to leave their dairy farm in Idaho and move their family down here to sacrifice with and for others, are a helpful reminder to examine my own life and motives.
3: You can eat whatever you like. At home I’m stuck with a mostly vegan diet consisting of natural peanut butter you have to mix, chia that sticks in your teeth, and enough red rice yeast to gag Goliath. On a mission’s trip you are, as the Blues Brothers so wisely deduced, on a mission from God. Therefore, you can eat whatever you want?! For the first time since my last trip to Haiti I’ve had red meat, hotdogs, coke, cheese, brownies, heavy cream in dark coffee – mercy this stuff tastes GREAT. It’s even better knowing it won’t affect my cholesterol since it’s a mission trip. However I may need to buy larger pants when I get home.
4: Heavenly Music. If you have not heard the Haitian women singing hymns in harmony or the kids singing in the opening ceremony on Facebook, you really should check it out. It is, truly, heavenly.
5. Beautiful Faces. How can you not love these kids? I’m hoping my glorified body will have a face like the kids who come to English Camp. The best for me is seeing our group love the kids, and seeing some make the decision to follow Christ. That’s tough to beat, and, I think, as close to heaven as you can get on earth.
6: You may get to witness a resurrection. Every year the 1998 Isuzu Trooper Diesel is waiting it’s rebirth for English Camp. It tends to run from the time we fix it until about Christmas, when it dies yet again. It’s so cool to hear it come back to life after six months of deep death. Well, it is for me anyway. Truly, it is a picture of God’s grace how He continues to give this ministry mcmhaiti.org what it needs to keep moving forward.
7. It’s the closest thing to the Acts 2 church on Earth – which may have been the church that best brought heaven to earth. There may be a better example of the Acts 2 church than what we see in Haiti, but it’s the closest that I’ve witnessed. 40 of us eat out of the same kitchen. We serve another 400+ two meals a day because they are in need and we were sent here with food and money from other believers in another country to meet that need. We’ve built homes and drilled wells through the sacrifice of others – in this way we are having all things in common. We share in the apostles teaching” see miraculous answers to prayer, and are having favor with the people. Now, if we can just import some of this to the spiritually impoverished USA, then we can bring some heaven to earth in Rio Rancho.
But, until then, you will just have to come to Haiti to experience Heaven on earth.