The title explains my theme for the last few days. The Lord has given me this verse to motivate me through the hard work. There is so much to update on but there is also a lot of work to be done right now, so I don't want to take too much time! Right now we are busy unpacking boxes upon boxes from a shipment of donations. On Christmas eve we spent over 10 hours getting in a massive shipment from a port city. There were 13 huge crates with about 20 moving boxes in each crate. We packed it all into a moving van ( in the HEAT of the day), traveled back through the mountains to Leogane, and then began unloading all the boxes in the dark- trying to beat the rain. The shipment included: stove, baby chairs, clothes, storage boxes, feed my starving children food, canned meat, fruit, vegetables, baby formula, bottles, diapers, a basketball hoop, hundreds of shoes, blankets, towels, coloring books, and on and on!!! The house is packed full of kids and boxes. The driveway in front of the house is full of boxes, the staircase is lined with boxes and the entire kitchen is packed high with boxes.
The big Christmas celebration will be on Dec 28, after Chris and Emily arrive, as well as Jasmine's husband Greg. Last night we had a small celebration which included choclate pudding, Christmas songs, and presents. The kids went absolutely CRAZY when jasmine told them she'd be coming back into the room with her arms full of presents. She called each kids up individually and handed them a present to bring to another child. After everyone had a gift in their arms they were all allowed to open them. They were so very excited!! Everyone was showing off their gifts to their friends and to me. Every kid got a stuffed animal, and a big plastic bag that included socks, a shirt, a coloring book, crayons, and a couple pieces of candy. I have it on video so I'll post it as soon as I get back to the states.
On monday and Tuesday I will go to the hospital with the students from the nursing school and on Wed and or Thursday, Rigan and I will start going a community assessment of high blood pressure and diabetes and then develop a follow-up plan for how to care for them.
Everything has gone so well. The Lord has protected me in all I have done. It was a little strange having Christmas here. In the US, everyting is so quiet, but here the market is still bustling and it's like any other day. Some people have told me that they are too poor for Christmas to be a celebration, and I think that might be a little bit true.
Hope to update again soon!