As I have been processing all that I observed and experienced on my trip, I have come up with a list of insights and thoughts. It is not comprehensive, of course, but here are some of the things I realized and learned while on my trip to Haiti–
1. If you have enough food to feed your children you are blessed. If you have enough food to feed yourself, you are doubly blessed.
2. People have very similar emotions and relationships and personalities…no matter where you travel.
3. America is a beautiful place.
4. What I complain and moan about often isn’t all that important.
5. Happiness is not dependent on material wealth.
6. The choices here in this country for just about anything (cereal, paint colors, golf courses) are almost unheard of in other parts of the world.
7. If living for Jesus doesn’t ever take us outside our comfort zone, then we are missing out on some huge blessings.
8. Don’t let the porters at the airport intimidate you into handing over your life savings!
9. Clear, pure water from your faucet is an amazing blessing that most of the world does not have.
10. Sharing the gospel isn’t as hard as we think it is.
11. The sky in Haiti is unspeakably beautiful.
12. Trash Collectors provide us with a wonderful service which we take very much for granted.
13. America is a beautiful place (yes, I know I put that one twice).
14. A person’s conscience will inform them that they are living in sin if they are living with someone of the opposite sex and they are not married.
15. The few flowers I did spot were like beacons of color in a mosaic of brown, sandy dirt and green weeds.
16. Hearing a familiar worship song or hymn sung in a different language is a reminder of how all nations will all worship together in Heaven.
17. If you have a house with electricty and running water, you are in the top 20% of the richest people in the world.
18. God’s timing is impeccable.
19. Heaven must look much sweeter to someone who lives in a barren field, in a small tent, with rice and beans making up 90+% of their diets.
I could go on and on. Mostly, I realized the many blessings I take for granted, but instead should be deeply thankful for. But many of these things are material blessings. And while I realized how rare and unusual it is to enjoy them, I realized something even more important—
20. If we have heard the gospel and embraced it…If we have changed and transformed lives because we are so in love with our Savior…if we are truly saved from our sins and not just making an empty profession…THEN we can claim to be brothers and sisters in Christ. And it doesn’t matter from what country we hail…the color of our skin…or the language we speak. And the joy that can be found worshipping with other brothers and sisters who also love the Lord is unspeakable.