Saturday, January 7, 2012

Ten Guys & 10 Days in Haiti

So this is kind of exciting: On February 17th I'm going to Haiti with a Samaritan's Purse Haiti workteam. It is an all guy group from my church and we're going to an area of great needs where we will do things like help build an orphanage, love the people, and basically just grow God's kingdom in whatever way we can.

I don't want to sensationalize that I'm going and I really don't want to sound super spiritual. I just want to be real about it so here's my attempt.

There is a great guy in my church, Dan who along with his family have done mission work in many countries. Jobina went to Ecuador to visit these folks and do ministry with them this past spring and had an amazing experience. So when Dan said he was leading a trip to Haiti I thought about it for awhile and came up with a nice long list lot of reasons why it couldn't work for me. But I just wasn't at peace. I decided to take a step of faith and say yes . . . and now I have to get some shots.

Me and Mission's trips have never worked out - I never even thought about one until I went to Bible College. There I got the missions bug but every time I've tried to go on one something didn't work out. Once I tried to sign up for a trip to Cambodia, but the team fell apart. Another time I tried to do a summer with Child Evangelism Fellowship, but for some reason after aggressively recruiting me, they just ignored my application. Perhaps it was because God wanted me at summer camp (which is where I went after these failed attempts)? Either way I've never gone on one until now.

Haiti is still deep in recovery from the terrible earthquake that struck in 2010. 220,000 people died, 300,000+ people were injured, and 1.5 million people became homeless. Samaritan's purse has done some great work there and we are honored to join them. If this sounds interesting to you and you'd like to partner with me and the team there's a few ways:

1. Please pray for me! Send me and email (or keep watching this blog) and I'll post some specifics that we'd love to have covered in prayer.

2. Come to our party! We're having an Information and Fundraiser Dessert Evening at my church on January 21st (7pm at Cornerstone Alliance Church in Winnipeg). We'll tell you all about the trip and there will be amazing desserts and auction (there will be a silent auction too). It would be great if you could attend or if you'd like to donate something for the auction that would be most appreciated. Please let me know by Jan 15th if you'd like to go and we'll reserve a place for you.

3. Share your wisdom! If you've been on a short term mission trip and you have some wise words or advice to share about going on one, please do. I can use all the help I can get (seriously).

Thanks for reading this and I wish you a great day,

P.S. A video with more info about what's happened in Haiti and what God is doing there:


Elayne said...

What an opportunity Mark! We will be praying for you as you prepare to go and while you are in Haiti.
I'm enjoying a devotional book by Sarah Young "Jesus Calling" and came across the following early in the New Year....true dependence is not simply asking God to bless what you have decided to do. It is coming to God with an open mind and heart, inviting Him to plant His desires within us. He might infuse within us a dream that seems far beyond our reach....(an almost direct quote). Blessings as you immerse yourself in this awesome dream! Ps. 139:7-10
PS...I just returned from a speaking engagement that wasn't in my plans :)

Mike Harding said...

"we will do things like help build an orphanage"

Who's going to support it after you've had your fix of being virtuous?

"love the people"

Give me a break! What ever does that mean - it certainly does not sound useful or practical.

"and basically just grow God's kingdom in whatever way we can"

That sounds very wishy-washy. I suspect the people in Haiti, who are amongst the poorest in the world, would prefer you to be a little more practical.

Mate: rather than waste your money on airfares etc and enter into an area where you'll simple consume resources and do stuff all worthwhile; donate the cash to one of the aid agencies who are already there and have an established base. Of course that wouldn't massage your conscience in the same manner as "loving the people" but it may be a damn sight more useful.

Mike Harding - Australia. (Who happened upon this blog by chance when looking for something else).

Stacey said...

I'd love to go to Haiti someday too. I think. From all the people I've talked to that have been there, it's impossible to prepare your mind for what you will see there. We just had a team from our church come back from Haiti on Saturday, and they will be sharing in church on Sunday. I'm looking forward to hearing about their time there.

And to Mike Harding... have you ever been there? I've heard many many stories from friends about how the local people just don't care what their country looks like. They have a huge sense of entitlement. So if more men like Mark will go and show an example of how to live, and give of himself, then I think that's pretty awesome.