I’m reposting this post written by John McHoul of Heartline Ministries in Port au Prince. We adopted through John and his wife Beth and have a ton of respect for what they do. Seriously fantastic ministry. They’ve lived in Haiti for 21 years, so I think he’s earned the right to say a few things :) To see the original post go here.
HAITI CAN BE A DANGEROUS PLACE
Posted by John McHoul on February 16, 2011.
I often receive e-mails from some that would like to come to Heartline to visit and help out. We appreciate those that come with a purpose, they certainly make a difference. Often, I will hear from someone or from a group who say that they would like to come and then they ask if it is safe. I confess that I get rather irritated when I hear that question.
I usually reply back cordially and ask if God has called them to come to Haiti. And if the answer is yes, then I tell them it is safe. As safe as it was for Daniel in the lion’s den and for the three Hebrew men in the fiery furnace and even as safe as it was for Stephen when he was stoned and ultimately as safe as it was for Christ when He died on the cross.
I strongly believe that “safe” is overrated if it means will I be safe physically. The better question is, “Is it God’s will for me to go?” If the answer is, “Yes” then how much more safer can you be than in God’s will. This may not mean that harm will not come your way but what is that compared to being in God’s will. Was Jesus safe?
BUT I HAVE recently been spending some time thinking about Haiti and have finally concluded after 21 years of living here, that it can be a very dangerous place. Some may be saying, “Ah it’s about time John got his head out of the sand and admitted that Haiti can be a dangerous place.”
Yes, those of us who live here can be in great, grave danger. We can be in danger of:
- Becoming numb to the cries of the poor.
- Not being moved to anger and compassion at the conditions in which many people live.
- Looking but not seeing.
- Hearing but not listening.
- Seeing what is but not what can be.
- Thinking that we need to change the Haitian culture to look like our culture and that the people aren’t doing it right because they don’t do it like we do.
- Thinking that living here is a sprint, when in reality, it’s a marathon.
- Being so practical about what we need to live that we limit God in what we do.
- Not totally depending on God for God’s work.
- Thinking that doing is more important than being.
Yes, it is true Haiti can be a dangerous place, perhaps as dangerous as where you live.