The mission of Hope For The Hungry is to "Share the Bread of Life with a Starving World". God has called us to serve people who suffer from hunger that is both spiritual and physical. According to scriptural mandate, we offer food for the body and salvation for the spirit to those who do not know Jesus Christ and will suffer eternal death without Him.

Friday, May 30, 2014

Farewell Ferrier!

Today was our last day in Haiti. We woke up, had breakfast, and headed into Cap Haitien to shop for some souvenirs. When we were finished, we headed back to the home to start the Back to School
distribution. Before we started, I took each of the girls pictures. This year, I told them when I was going to take the pictures so they had plenty of time to get ready.  They were all getting their hair re-braided and got to chose an outfit from the new clothes they received this week. During our "photo shoot" each of the girls personalities popped out! We has some pretty crazy girls strutting around, posing, and wearing crazy accessories.  They had a blast!

During shoe distribution, I am always nervous that what we picked out for each of the girls wouldn't work, but that wasn't the case this year. Everyone's shoes fit... talk about a miracle! Each of the kids got a new backpack and a pair of shoes for the new school year, along with a picture of themselves, some candy, a punch balloon, and a note from a sweet American friend. The girls were all so excited about their things! Their eyes would light up as soon as they unzipped their bags. It is always the sweetest thing!

When distribution was over, we headed to the beach. All of us piled into two cars and headed that way. We were only in the water for 20 minutes before the storm showed up... It was awful. It came on so quickly. We had to run to the car! The poor girls had to ride in the rain back to the home. At least it was an adventure.

We then had a surprise feast with everyone. There were over 50 people at dinner. It was a time of sweet fellowship with our Haitian family. After dinner, all of the girls got sad that we were leaving and started to cry. We did all kinds of things to make them happy... Sang, danced, rapped, and sang some more. We even called a few friends in Texas to cheer them up. In a backwards kind of way, I am always a little glad to see them emotional... It means that our team truly made an impact on the girls.

I can't believe the week is over already. It really does seem like the trip has just started.  This has been one of my top 5 trips of all time. The Lord did some great things this week. Not only in the lives of the children but also in the lives of our team as well. I believe we all have a much deeper respect for those who seem to have so little in the worlds eyes. We have seen what it looks like to seek the Lord with all your heart and worship him. And we have all been convicted of not always living as new creations, set apart by God to draw others in with our love.

Please continue to pray for us. We will start the journey home at 5:00am, so tomorrow will be a long day for us. Pray for us as we settle back in to life at home. Although we have experienced something profound this week, no one around us will know what it was like. Pray for us as we decipher what the Lord did in our hearts this week and what he's calling us to do with our experiences. We would love it if you take us out for coffee and listen to all of the details of the trip.

Thank you all again for loving and praying for us. You were an integral part of our team and we are grateful for you!

Thursday, May 29, 2014

VBS Day 4: Walking Straight Before Him

I cannot believe that our VBS is over...

Like all of the other days, Day 4 was a success! Today, we wrapped up the week learning about loving others by serving them and telling them about Jesus. In the big assembly, I told the story about Fishers of Men. As I was talking Chris made a fishing pole and fish balloon. He also made a man to really hit home our point. The kids went ecstatic when they saw the finished product!

To finish out the week, we did lots of crafts and songs with our classes one last time. We also built in extra time for the older kids to catch up on the fun from yesterday. After lunch, we had a "show and tell" for all of the kids. Each class got to sing a song and recite a memory verse in front of the school. I was so impressed by the show... It was evident that the kids had really been listening all week because they did such an amazing job. We had our 3 year olds reciting memory verses! It was pretty incredible to hear.

It was sad to have to say goodbye to all of our kids from class, and the teachers. The kids were all so grateful for everything they were able to do this week. And it was an honor to work with our Haitian brothers and sisters. They each brought something unique to the classrooms and our team was better because of each of them.  As hard as it was, we had to say goodbye and head back to the girls home.

For just a few minutes, it rained! Although fleeting, it was nice and cooled everything off just a tad. We watched a pretty intense futbol game, which Chris was a champ in. We were quite impressed with the skills that our friends had with playing in flip flops, slip-on sandals or even barefoot. Craziness!

At the end of the day our team got together to give our reflections on the day. Our main conclusion was that we really believe that the children were listening and understood the message. Such a great thing to hear and exciting that the truths from this week will carry on in their hearts!

Tomorrow is going to be fun and relaxing. As of now, we are planning on souvenir shopping and going to the beach with the girls and our translators. We'll see what actually happens!

Here are some things to pray for:

- thank the Lord for an amazing week

- for the kids who attended our VBS, that the words that were spoken will penetrate their hearts and make them want to follow the Lord through godly behavior.

- our last day with the girls, it's always hard to get so close to someone and then leave. Pray that we are able to say sweet goodbyes to everyone.

Thanks so much for all of the prayers and support. It is definitely felt here in Haiti!

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

VBS Day 3: Love in our words and actions

Day 3 of VBS was another success! Although the older kids didn't attend because of a country mandated meeting, we still had a great time. We learned all about walking straight with him by loving others through our words and actions. We talked about listening, being respectful, and being honest.

In the assembly, Chris made a set of balloon ears to go along with our lesson on listening and obeying. The kids have all thoroughly enjoyed watching his balloon ministry and it's been so fun to see his gifting being used well!

In our classes, we made disguises while talking about being truthful and a set of paper plate ears during our listening lesson. The kids all looked ridiculous (and cute). It was pretty hilarious how proud they were to show off their props.

Because the older kids didn't come, the younger kids had a harder time focusing. It took some ingenuity, but we managed to hold their attention just long enough to get to the end of the day.

After VBS, we went about the home as usual: washing dishes, helping prepare dinner, hanging out. There is always so much joy here. No matter what is going on, there is always some one singing, laughing, or playing near by.

The girls helped us prepare for tomorrow's craft. Cutting out hundreds of things sure does go faster when you've got 20 people working together. When we finished, I randomly drew the silhouette of one of the girls with the glow of the flashlight on the wall on to some construction paper. I thought it was just something silly to do and had no idea what was coming. Every single person in the home as well as a lot of the staff came through to get theirs drawn too. An hour later, I was finally finishing up. It was so funny. The kids thought the drawings were hysterical, especially of other people. Especially when their hair is sticking out crazy because of their braids.

I can't believe that tomorrow is our last day of VBS. Here are some things you can pray for:

- our last day of VBS we are learning about loving God by serving others and telling others about God's love
- for receptiveness to the message of our newness in Christ
- for sweet goodbyes with the kids in our classes and our teachers
- pray for our relationships with the girls to continue to grow during the rest of our time

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

VBS Day 2: Love and Kindness

Day 2 of VBS was even better than the first day! Today, we taught all about showing God's love to others by treating them with kindness.

Our assembly started out with a review of the memory verses. I was quite impressed that all of the children had memorized them already. It's such a sweet sound to hear a church full of tiny voices reciting scripture! We learned a some new songs and a new verse for the day.

During story time, I taught about showing kindness even when no one else is. I shared the story of the Good Samaritan and the unforgiving man. I had the children all act out the story as I told it. We looked quite silly, but all the kids had a great time.

Once we were in our individual classrooms, we sang more songs and made crafts. We made a man with outstretched arms and a chain link of kindness. To sum it up, we had a great day of VBS!

Once we got back home and ate lunch, we rested, helped out around the home, and played with the girls.

We remembered right before dark that we still needed to prep some of our crafts so we spent some time doing that. When we were finished, we sat with the girls and began singing English worship songs. They sound so beautiful with so many different voices.

Here are some ways you can pray:

-VBS Day 3 is all about loving others with your actions and words
- 4th, 5th, and 6th graders will all be attending a mandatory meeting in Cap Haitien tomorrow so they will not be participating in VBS. Pray that we can find time to present the info from the day to them so that they don't miss out on any of the fun.
- our continued time with the girls and leaders in the home.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Walking straight before Him: Day 1

Day 1 is in the books. Today was the best first day of VBS that I have ever had. Things ran smoothly, we had all of the supplies we needed, and the kids enjoyed the day! Our teachers, administrators, and church members were wonderful. They all helped out a tremendous amount. From the assembly time to making up songs, to crowd control, they each are playing an important part in our week.

Today we introduced the theme of "walking straight before Him", with our theme verse being 2 cor 5:17. "Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed and the new has come!"  During our assembly time, as I was teaching, Chris made balloon animals to go along with the story. To help illustrate how we are made into a new creation, Chris made a caterpillar and a butterfly. They were a HUGE hit! The kids loved them!

We had a great time learning new songs and memory verses. We made foot shaped name tags with the theme verse on them and also made butterflies. The kids were so excited with everything that we had prepared for them. We are ready to go back tomorrow!

After VBS, we continued to build relationships with the girls. I finally learned the word "fou" (sounds like foo). It means being crazy in a playful way. And "fou" is a perfect word to sum up all of our girls. We are having the best time with them. We had a massive dance party in the courtyard at the girls home, which we have dubbed Club Ferrier. It really gives dancing before the Lord a new meaning.

We were also able to give the girls printed song books of English worship songs. We went over some of them tonight and will continue throughout the week.

All in all, it's been a excellent day. Here are some ways you can pray for us:

- Day 2 of VBS: showing God's love by being kind to others
- for energy to keep up with all of the excited kids
- for chances to minister to the teachers and helpers in the classes
- for better time management (haha, it's Haiti... Maybe just pray for flexibility on our parts!)

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Resting in Him

Oh what a day!  We have had a restful and fun sabbath.  Our experience at church was beautiful. Worshipping in another language is such a breathtaking experience that you can't fully describe to someone. Although we weren't able to understand what was being said, we could all feel the presence of the Lord among us in the church. We could see Him in the faces of our Haitian brothers and sisters. Watching them worship is so humbling... To see someone who has so little in the eyes of the world experience such joy and hope and abundance in the God who has created us all in His image. It was a pretty incredible service!

Afterwards, we had a meeting with the helpers and teachers for the VBS this week. Although I was nervous about the turnout, we had around 10-15 people come! They were all very interested in what we were going to do this week and are excited to work right alongside of us. We are so grateful for each of them!

The rest of the day was spent resting and hanging out with the girls in our home. We worked on English, helped around the house, braided hair, danced, and sang many songs!

It has been a really great day. We are excited to start the VBS tomorrow. We are waiting in anticipation of what the Lord is going to do through us for His Kingdom.

Here are some ways you can pray:
- for the VBS that starts in the morning
- pray it goes smoothly and that we get into a routine quickly
- for our teachers and church helpers to really dig in with us in teaching the children about being new creations in Christ
- for our relationships with our girls and translators to continue to develop

Again, thanks so much for your prayers. You truly are right beside us!

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Finally in Ferrier!

Today was a fantastic day! We finally arrived in Haiti and have been soaking up this new culture ever since. For some of us, this is our first taste of missions to a third world country. For others, we are excited to be back! There's nothing quite like the feeling you get as your final plane takes off towards the unknown.

Once we arrived at the girls come, we became quickly aquatinted with the girls and leadership at the home. We ate a wonderful meal and have danced and sang the day away.

We are excited for tomorrow because we get to go to church in the morning. Haitian church is always a beautiful picture of what heaven will look like, full of people praising the Lord in their own language. Pray for us to fully worship the Lord in a culture that is so different from ours.

We are also supposed to have our teacher and church helped training tomorrow after church. Pray that meeting goes well. Pray that we will be able to communicate clearly the vision we feel the Lord has for the week. Pray that our Haitian brothers and sisters would be as excited as we are to teach the children all about the newness we can only find in Christ.

Thanks for all your prayers and support!