God is Good: The Haiti Report

After the dust had settled from their mission trip to Haiti, I asked Bethany and Esther (the two lovelies from this photo of the week!) this question:

“If you could tell someone only ONE thing from the trip, what would it be?”

They both (separately and unaware of their counterpart’s answer) said the exact same thing:

“God is Good.”

After initially (and might I add immediately) stating that God is good, Bethany said it this way:

“I mean, I could go over day by day all that we did and saw, and God was in all of it, but really, it’s a miracle in and of itself that we even got there.”

And then she shared their travel story – the aforementioned miracle – that is absolutely worth re-telling here, so in her own words…

“It could have been ugly, especially considering there weren’t any available flights until the first team was supposed to go home. But let me start at the beginning.

So we got to the airport, loaded all our stuff, and got on a puddle jumper plane bound for Miami. And then we flew and flew and flew (in circles) and it was the worst. flight. ever.

There was terrible turbulence. At one point we even dropped the length of 3 drop zones {those who have been to Carowinds may be familiar with this reference…} and the lady across the aisle in front of me wasn’t paying attention, so she came flying up out of her chair and practically did the wave. I’m pretty sure her whole body left the seat! It was so funny! Especially because I was laughing so hard while everyone else was scared for their life!

But since we had been flying around in circles for over an hour, we didn’t have enough fuel to make it to Miami, so we landed in West Palm Beach where we proceeded to sit and sit and sit in the airplane on the middle of the tarmac. They gave us more drinks, but then somebody flushed paper towels down the toilet so we couldn’t even potty anymore. True story.

So then they said they were gonna give us some fuel, so the fuel man pulled up to the airplane, but then he said “nope, can’t give you any gas.” At this point (three and half hours later), they finally pulled up to a gate so we could hurry off the plane for ten minutes and use the working potty while they fueled the plane. It was all so bad that the pilot kept saying over and over that if we didn’t want to fly with them anymore, we didn’t have to.

But after we got our fuel (four hours later, now), we were finally up in the air again. Headed to Miami. However, our flight from Miami to Port-au-Prince had already left 45 minutes earlier and it was, of course, the last flight of the day.

So we get over to the Red Roof Inn to stay at the “distressed passenger” rate, head up to our room where we think we’ll have two queen beds and a couch for all 5 of us girls who were traveling together, open the door, and find one, very small, king size bed. Ha! Yeah, we laughed. And then headed back downstairs to get a second room, which happened to be the last room available in the whole hotel.

The next morning, we got up at 4am, called the cab company and told them we needed a mini-van, and then proceeded to wait in the lobby for an hour waiting for the mini-van cab that never showed. At 5am, we just took the hotel shuttle back to the airport in hopes of maybe making it on the first flight out at 6:50am.

When we got there, we found out we were numbers 7-11 on the standby list, and the first flight was already overbooked. So, we waited around until the first flight, but as expected, no one got on. We got some breakfast, came back to the gate, waited a little, paid $8 to use the internet (yep, we did), then decided to talk to the gate attendant about empty seats.

She said, “Well, there’s nothing today, uh, nothing Tuesday…let me check Wednesday…no, nothing…the next available flight is July 29th.” No available flights for SEVEN days?!? We didn’t know what else to do, so we literally laughed out loud!

Feeling a little dismayed, we went and sat back down to wait and just planned on being there for several days. But then, they started calling standby names for the 10:50am flight – we figured we wouldn’t get on, but we thought maybe enough people would that we could get on the next one. Hope! And then they called the first person from our group, the second person, the third person…all the way to the fifth person. We might have gone just a little crazy in the airport! We’re talking hopping and jumping and singing!

But after all that, we finally arrived in Haiti, just one day behind schedule, ready to hit the ground running, and more excited than ever to just be there!”

And Esther summarized her experience this way

“God is good.

Even in the midst of extreme poverty and brokenness, God is SO good.

Throughout the entire trip, God constantly reminded and showed me how great He is. This trip was entirely about serving HIM. It was not about me.

I saw God as we interacted with the Haitian people, as we played with the local children who came to visit, as we worked with the Haitian staff, as we sat around the kitchen and chatted with Mr. Bobby and Mrs. Wanda, as we packed pills, and as we reflected on the day’s work. I found myself constantly saying, “God is good. God is good.” And I still say it.

It’s the best way I can really describe my experience in Haiti.

God is good.”

And those flip-flops from the pile in the middle of our living room floor?

They found their way to some precious little Haitian feet.

Yes, I couldn’t agree more …

God is good.

Amen?

**all photos courtesy of Bethany**

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