Report by Cory Meyer – Title: The Unexpected
Upon arriving at the Truth Evangelistic Ministry mission house on Friday morning, our team, comprised primarily of members of First Baptist Church of St. Charles, was greeted by four young ladies from Canada with hearts filled by the Holy Spirit, eager to love on the children of Haiti. The addition of these ladies to our team has proven to be a true blessing, as they brought a zeal that meshed perfectly with our already spirited group. Equipped with the necessary tools and spiritual gifts the Lord provided us, we jumped right into the mission we were called to here in Haiti.
Tuesday night we attended a worship service at the baptist church on the Truth Evangelistic Ministry compound in Z’Orange. After a long and spirited time of music and worship, Pastor Brad Newbold, our team leader, led the congregation in a sermon about what it means for Christians to be in the center of God’s will. After watching the Haitians’ reaction to the words flowing from Pastor Brad’s mouth, I was reminded of the abundance that the Jesus we worship in St. Louis, Missouri, is the same Jesus that the Haitians were worshiping in that church that night. God has no limits; He has no preference of language, color of skin, or geographical position – He only wishes for His children to follow and obey His teachings. What we didn’t expect was what was to follow the sermon that night – we met a young man named Fedo. He approached our group in interest of sharing his love for playing the guitar with one of our members, Taylor. He asked if he could play some songs, and we responded with an enthusiastic ‘yes.’ Fedo led our group in a number of worship songs in English, for which he knew every word. The atmosphere was truly indescribable, it almost brought tears to my eyes as we worshiped with this young Haitian man we had just met, singing praise to our Father. Our hearts were full that night as we headed to bed, having experienced the fullness of God’s presence.
This morning our team held VBS at a small church on the outskirts of Z’Orange called Jerusalem IV. The morning was filled with stories and skits, all aimed at sharing God’s love and joy with the hearts and faces of the beautiful Haitian children attending. This morning’s VBS, however, differed from the previous ones we’ve held throughout the early part of the week. Last night we were fortunate enough to attend a worship service at Jerusalem IV. Those two hours that we spent worshiping the Creator of the world have drastically changed the way I view and approach worship, and have given me an overwhelming joy that has truly filled my heart! These people, who from first glance appear to have nothing, worshiped their Lord and Savior with passion and zeal unlike anything I’ve ever witnessed. It instilled in me a fervor for worship that I will never forget, hoping only to replicate it’s fullness more regularly. It just so happens that yesterday was also my birthday, making this day one I will cherish forever, and certainly never forget. The joy our team experienced last night in that Haitian church – made of an aluminum roof and tarps for walls – was still ever-present this morning as our team shared the Good News with those children. Through these experiences, I was reminded of what having a relationship with Christ is all about. It’s not about the money or objects we possess, the social belonging we yearn, or the building in which we worship – it’s about understanding the Good News Jesus has given us, and sharing it with those who do not know.
You see, I learned this trip that it was the things for which I did not plan for or expect that I found the most satisfaction or joy in the Spirit of the Lord. Just as Pastor Brad preached about Tuesday night in the sermon in church, amazing things happen when we immerse ourselves in the center of God’s will for our lives. He brought me to Haiti this week for a purpose – after experiencing the ways in which the Holy Spirit has filled this place this week, I know that my being here in Haiti this week was the will of God for my life.