For most of you reading this you are already know I along with my husband and 3 kids are missionaries in Haiti. I came here with a very clear vision of where God wanted me to work and what it was He wanted to see in this specific place. I could barely contain my excitement to know that this season of my life was going to be in Haiti. What I failed to realize was that during this time while we worked on His vision was how much pain, suffering and frustration I would also be apart of.
Yes I saw a vision and yes I see the start of it, but the longer the I am here the more I realize the longer it may take for it to unfold.
Tonight I would like to start by sharing one of those visions He gave me with others being also talked about in the next few days.
I remember very clearly sitting on the plane waiting to head back to Canada after a week in Haiti when the Lord showed me where and what it was that I was suppose to do. The first thing he showed me was kids in the community we visited going to school. Ok, easy enough we can help send these kids to school. We can proudly say we have 24 kids in the sponsorship program who now attend school.
What I didn't know about part of this plan was the parent/school aspect of it. Yes great these kids are enrolled in school but that does that mean they get to go to school everyday? No! I have never heard of more ridiculous reasons why some of our kids were not allowed to attend school. Some reasons are:
- You're hair is too long
- You're backpack is ripped
- You're shoes aren't in good enough shape
- You don't have ribbon for your hair
- You lost a school book
Those are just to name a few. Then we have the parent part of it. So many parents just do not get how important an education is. And it now has become our job to press into these parents are much as we do the kids the importance of the kids going to school. We are trying to make sure these parents understand how important it is that the kids go to school EVERYDAY, that they do their homework they are sent home, that they attend their regular tutoring class each week and what we really want them to know is how we have people who have never met their children and are investing in them because they believe that just like any other child in this world they should have the opportunity to learn. We want this to be an equal relationship. We want them to invest in their child's education just as equally and if not more than the organization and the people investing in their child.
What I also have been learning through this is that we cannot measure a child's success by their education level. We know that some of our children will probably not finish school because of their age and the level they are at now.
For example: We have a 14 year old who is in grade 1. This is his first year of attending school and if he does really well on his final exams he may pass the grade but if not he will return to grade 1 in the fall. He has improved significantly since he started the year even to the point that I saw his report card and quite possibly scared him when I expressed my excitement and joy of how proud of him I was. But he's the reality if decides he wants to graduates from school he will be 26 years old. If he goes this route we will be behind him along the way, but if he decides to go another route we also want him to know that we will help him in whatever we can.
He has a love for farming and it is quite possible that he may decide in time that he wants to make a career out of it. So yes right now we want to stress how important him attending school is and learning. Those math skills will come in handy. But there will come a time where maybe our focus with him is not him attending school but him learning to run a business in farming.
What I have learned from this is that yes it is so easy to put kids in school but God wants so much more from us than just that. He is asking us to go deeper and the more deeper I become the more I realize how much more of God I need.