Saturday, January 23, 2010



I began and ended the day talking with Jim. What a blessing! I was thrilled to hear his voice this morning assuring me that all is well. The team is making a difference every day in the name of the Lord. I began to immediately ask a million questions about the team's health, safety, and work. They are praising God for his incredible faithfulness every step of the way. In the middle of our conversation, a strong tremor, later to be identified as a 4.4 quake, hit and I listened as Jim yelled "Tremor" out to those around him. I could hear the fright in his voice as he hurried to escape the concrete second floor sleeping quarters. He exclaimed that the whole building was shaking and I held my breath in disbelief while saying a prayer for their safety - this 30 seconds of chaos was surreal - and then it abruptly stopped. Jim hadn't yet descended on the ladder and he resumed our convervation with a bit more emotions. He said that the tremors are frequent, though not as hard as this one, and he asked that the prayer warriors pray for these tremors to cease so that our team can work and sleep on solid ground.  When the tremors hit, they produce great anxiety and fear as everyone goes on alert - they have a routine to get away from any buildings asap. Evidently one person can feel a powerful tremor and a person only 100 feet away will feel nothing! They keep everyone on constant alert. Jim shared a story about sitting at a metal table yesterday while a young Haitian boy played in a small tent beneath it. A big tremor rocked the house and the young boy panicked and began to scream in fear. The zipper was stuck on his tent and he couldn't get out. Jim struggled with the zipper from the outside as the boy pulled at it from the inside. The ground was shaking beneath them and Jim said he felt so helpless at that moment. His emotions overflowed with the awareness that he must get out of the building but he couldn't leave this young boy behind. The zipper released and when they both finally got safely outside, he was so weak he had to sit down. He realized that these precious children will have to live in this type of ongoing fear long after he returns home. I stopped asking questions then and listened as my brother shared his heart with one story after another of emotional experiences from this week. He spoke of his visit to the ravine where a nun called him over to help a young preteen boy with a crushed leg. The boy had open infected wounds wrapped in a bloody, pus covered bandage. Jim knew they had to get him to the clinic that was 1 mile away, so he prayed for strength to physically carry him. When they got to the street, along came Jeff driving a truck going to distribute food for one of the agencies! Jeff stopped and gave them a ride to the clinic - Praise God. ( These are not accidents - these are miracles! ) . The young boy cried out in pain the entire ride. but evidently transformed into a whole differnt personality when the pain meds took over. He began to smile and joke and give high fives to those around him. Unfortunately when this dear Haitian boy's pain meds wear off, he is going to have to live in excruciating pain again. Jim was overcome as he saw Sherries house and how close she had stood to death. He wept with Pastor Cenore as he listened to the details of the destruction of our beloved "church on the rooftop" . So many lives were buried alive as all the houses built into the hillside came tumbling down into the valley . He said the US troops were able to save many, but wouldn't carry off the dead bodies. A mass grave now lays in the rubble of a once awe-inspiring spot. The team is handing out lots of food and water for the UN and other support agencies. Everyone has a role now, and Jeff is doing a lot of supply distribution. It seems the smaller non-profit agencies are doing a much better job than the large agencies at getting the food and water from the airport to the people. Jim said in order to avoid mobs, he often gives the local pastors the food and supplies who in turn call their congregation together to distribute them to the indiviual families. He doesn't see a lot of armed forces there in the slums of the ravine area, yet there is little violence. There are many pictures of children helping other children throughout the streets. Some of the street venders are setting up again with their limited supplies ( a couple cans of tuna, a bottle of mustard, vegetables, dusty flip flops ). The big cargo planes and the helicopters transporting patients fly over them constantly, but the most beautiful sound is that of the Haitians singing their praises to God throughout the night. I am convinced that this is how God is refreshing the spirits of our weary team each night and morning. That is a very different sound than the voodoo drums I heard on my last trip. Jim said to be sure to tell you about the airport. Each assisting country has taken a field of their own where they set up tents and proudly fly their flag above their relief efforts. It is a beautiful picture of a united world joined together in hope and love. Hopefully someone will get a picture of it for us. I apologize for rambling. There is so much to share and so little space. There is another mission team of 6 Georgians staying there at Sherrie's also. It is really hot there now ( 90s) and everyone is struggling to stay hydrated. Water is not readily available all the time and they end up giving away most of it everytime they get another supply. They are working hard. Today the medical team saw 103 patients. Yesterday they saw 133! Pastor Genada is staying with them to oversee the rebuilding of the outer security wall. They have hired Haitian men to help and the wall is really progressing. It looks like we are one of the only homes rebuilding in that poor area. Jim says familiar faces greet him everywhere as he walks and everyone wants to share their story of loss. Tonight Jim sounded tired but was happy to report that "It was a very good day!".

Please pray very specifically for these things today:

1 - The tremors cease and our team has firm ground to stand on.
2 - Renewed strength and energy for our team as they work long hours in high heat in the poorest of circumstances.
3- That God will continue to walk before our team preparing the way   
     for them to make a difference.
4 - That a spirit of revival will overtake Haiti and God will be honored
5 - Continued physical protection for our team
6 - Pray for their emotional well being while seeing so much tragedy and loss constantly.

7 - That souls will be saved!

Jim ended our conversation  thanking everyone for their prayers. They are overwhelmed at the number of people who are praying for them each hour. Prayer works! Our team is living proof.

There is power in the name of our Lord!

I pray I have honored Jim with a correct sharing of his heart. I love you, my dear brother.
 Keep up the good work!       To God Be The Glory!


Becky said...

Thank you Donna for "sharing Jim's heart". You have an awesome brother, we will continue to pray and support the Haiti people. Thank you for all you do!

Anonymous said...

...those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength, They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. Isaiah 40:31
It is my honor to pray for this team that is truly blessed, love carole

Donna Tyson said...

I am so glad you are enjoying the blog. It has been my privilege!

Donna Tyson said...
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