The last few days have just been perfect! Thursday we took the entire orphanage to the beach! I couldn’t have asked for a better day with my family! Fun days with the kids are my absolute favorite and I’m so grateful it worked out for us to go to the beach before I leave!
Thursday night we had staff night. Through this process of leaving I’ve been so overwhelmed by the love and support of my staff family. Truly. We had steak and baked potatoes (shout out to Craig Smelser!) and then our whole staff gathered in a circle. You guys, I get awkward when I’m the center of attention. I think that’s why I don’t like speaking in front of people or singing solos, I’d rather be back-up any day! Anyhow, there I sat in this circle full of people I love and they shared funny memories of me and a lot of affirming words. We laughed, we cried, and I was reminded of God’s goodness! I can’t thank my staff family enough for speaking such fun and kind, and encouraging words over me and then covering me in prayer that night. Truly blessed.
Saturday was another fun day of adventuring as we celebrated Scott’s birthday! I got to spend the day with the Bernard’s and the Campbells and we had a day full of laughter, celebrating and adventure!
Sunday morning was my last Sunday worshipping with my Haiti family before I go. Let me rewind for a minute though. When I was getting ready to move to Haiti, the song Hosanna was a song that ministered to me. It was my anthem, if you will. It was so meaningful to me that I even had the lyrics from the bridge printed as the border of my very first prayer card in 2012. Ok, bring it back. We never sing that song here, or at least haven’t for a very long time. As i went to staff church, wouldn’t you know it was the very first song we sang! Bring on the tears! God is so cool. I went down to Haitian church and we sang it again in Creole!!! Hello ugly cry! I was reminded, as we sang those precious words, that this is my prayer as I enter into a new season stateside. I’m not going to be Katie in Haiti anymore, but God’s still given me a mission. I’m Katie. I’m a daughter of the King. And I’m heading back to a broken place to be a light for Jesus. How precious is our father that he so intentionally reminded me of that on my last Sunday here!
After the singing my dear friend, Pastor Kenol, called me up to pray for me. The church extended their hands and sent me off covered in prayer. I have learned so much from my church family in Haiti. I’m constantly being challenged to love deeper, worship more and serve more from my Haitian brothers and sisters. They love Jesus fiercely. They understand community in way I’ve never seen before. They live with a joy that radiates such a beauty. Not only has God changed me, but the people of Haiti have changed me. They’ve made me better.
Last night I got to spend the evening with our Transition kids! We ate, we laughed, we watched some Sharknado and I let them go “shopping”in my apartment. The biggest gift God is giving me this week is time with the people I love! I’m so grateful for each of them!
As I sit in my office for my last Monday morning here, I can’t help but tear up. I 100% anticipated that leaving would be hard. It’s way harder than I could have ever imagined. While I know God is calling me to go, my heart is sad. I’m forever grateful for the opportunity to love and be loved here in Haiti! Praying the next few days slow down so I can cherish every single second!