Body or mind, heart or soul, we’re all human and we’re supposed to feel pain. You hide away from it at your own risk.

Over the last few days we have seen lots of things in Haiti, from kids walking in the streets to little old ladies carry water to their houses. From five people riding on a motorcycle to a small truck loaded to overflowing with materials for building. We’ve been to an orphanage and saw kids laugh and play with us, and today we saw kids getting fed in a church from a program that our family of churches helps fund. It has been an unreal experience and there have been many ups and downs along the way. 

Some pains have been from the sun, from the heat and the amount of copious sweat it can make you produce! There have pains in our feet and legs from walking so much and climbing hills. There have been some upset stomachs in our group this week from adjusting to the food. There were some serious pains at the orphanage looking in on where they sleep and how they only get one meal a day. 

In all the pain though there is a chance to learn and grow. If you hide away from the things that hurt you and make you feel pain you will not have a chance to learn from them. Without seeing some of the pains at the orphanage we might have missed the sense of community that these children seem to have. While some of the small children would fall asleep on some of our members the older ones would come by and scoop them up for a nap without having been asked to. There was more pain in watching the children being fed at the church, for some of them this is the only meal they will get. It was hard to be there and see some of their faces as they were getting waiting to be fed. But… without seeing them expectantly waiting for their food I might not have noticed Pastor Dugae and his wife. They were just as eager to handout the food and feed these children as the children were to receive it. 

I have heard some Father’s say that they can tell their kids not to touch the stove, but they truly understand not to do it until they burn themselves once. In all the pain we have seen and felt this week it is comforting to know that I have been surrounded by my own community and comforted and cared for by people who truly love me. I hope on this trip that some of the people in Haiti and the children in the orphanage can know that we love them just as much, and that we will continue our mission to help serve them.

Pain and joy can teach us. My hope for all of us is that we can stop for a few minutes and reflect on some of the things that we have learned this week. 

-Ryan

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