February 1, 2010

Miracles happen even in the midst of disaster - HAITI

Most all of you should know there was a terrible earthquake in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Very tragic and very sad. Thousands of people died, and are still dying.

But something about Haiti was pretty clear-- most all Haitians were involved in voodoo and witchcraft-- which was/is even more tragic. Our church has some missionaries there that own churches and an orphanage. One couple created and runs the orphanage, and they basically take almost every child that Hatians bring that are abandoned. Along with the orphanage, they also have a clinic there. They take care of children that ned help-- and even adults who need help. They live in Pion, Haiti. So they felt some of the tremors in the earthquake, but not much.

There was one lady, not a missionary, but she had a nephew in the earthquake and he survived in a three-story school building that collapsed during the earthquake. Her e-mail was forwarded through my church and to me. This is what is said:

I have seen many people turning to prayer as their last and only option--it should be a first choice and best choice. It does change things. I'll give you an example. My family has been sharing about more and more of their experiences. You can't tell about all the trials in a disaster like this at one time. Things keep coming out as time goes by. That first night after the quake, it was supposed to rain. The forecasts all predicted it and the Haitians said that the temperature and sky all indicated that it should have rained. Can you imagine if that would have happened? There were so many buried but still alive, the dust everywhere, and even the ones saved were sleeping outside and still in shock. It is cold for Haiti right now and rain would have killed many more people. My family said that their whole neighborhood who was outside that night prayed and prayed for the clouds to go away--as I'm sure many, many others did. It started to sprinkle just a little and everyone lifted their hands and shouted praises and supplications--and it didn't rain at all in Port that night or any other night since then. My sister, lifting up her hands as she recounted this, said that the clouds opened up and the stars showed over the whole sky. Amazing! God is good.

My nephew Louine, that was buried under his school, still suffers from the shakes. He can't sleep through the night. But, his story is a story of grace. He was on the second story of a 3-story building. His class room faced the street. He was sitting in his desk when he felt the earthquake start. He stood up immediately. It didn't take long for the building to collapse. He fell onto his desk instead of being crushed in it like others of his classmates were. But, when the quake ended his head was resting on the folding chair and one arm was under his desk and the ceiling of the 3rd floor was less than a foot above his head. He couldn't even sit up or turn his body at all. For a long time, the students didn't even know that it was a earthquake, they thought that only their building had fallen. But, after a lot of time had passed and no one arrived to help, they believed it had to be a quake and the whole city was affected. They knew they had to help themselves. It was already dark by this time and they only had the light from their phones. They couldn't call anyone. The ones that were still living encouraged each other not to cry or loose hope. They touched hands or feet or any part of the body, if possible, and sang hymns to keep their courage up. At around 9:00 PM, their professor, who was talking up to that point, passed away. He was 'sitting' right behind Louine. Then the students nearest the door were able to move the broken chalkboard to clear a hole near the doorway. It took a lot of painstaking work with their bare hands to clear even a small space. As each person was freed, it opened a small route to reach the others. Louine was one of the last. He is a tall young man and the hole wasn't big enough for him. He had to take the rubble and make the hole larger. By this time, there were people that were helping from the outside. And he made it out. One of the things that struck me the most is when he talks about the period of time when he was waiting for the others to get out. The cement ceiling was less than a foot away but it kept descending. Louine says that he kept passing his hand over his head to see how close the ceiling was to him. When his turn came, the ceiling was resting on his forehead. When he got out, the first people he saw were his dad and our cousin. They had arrived at the same moment that Louine left the building. Praise the Lord! Louine attributes his class being saved because they prayed together. The class next to his had many who survived the initial collapse but they panicked. Louine said his class mates tried to help them to be calm and pray and not to scream but they couldn't seem to stop. After a couple of hours, these students succumbed to shock and their injuries. No one was able to leave. Louine also prays that his professor was able to turn to God in his last moments because he cursed and mocked his students efforts to pray. But, Louine emphasizes that God can change hearts, even at the last moment. When one of his fellow classmates broke down, the rest of the class was able to sing and pray for them. In this way, they were able to stay encouraged and united. Louine thinks that 12-13 students were able to walk out of the rubble and 8-9 had to carried out of the building. Three students died instantly and the professor died after several hours. In all the classes, Louine's had the most survivors. Again, he attributes it to God's grace. The earthquake was at 4:45PM and Louine left the building at 10:30PM. Others followed him until into the early morning hours. Louine didn't leave the scene right away. He knew how the shock left so many tremendously thirsty. He and others went to find water and lowered it to the trapped students below. He believes that saved many others.

Louine wants me to say this to you: I want to tell my story because I didn't know for a long time whether I would die or not. I checked the time on my phone often so as to know the time of my death. But, there came a moment when God spoke to me. He said, 'You will not die, I want to show you my greatness.' Louine says it is for this reason that he not only wants to tell his story, but is able. I can attest to that as he is sitting beside me shaking. I pray that remembering God's grace and love in the midst of all the horror will heal him as nothing else can. He pleads with you to never stop praying because God does not allow anything to happen for nothing. God gives VICTORY.

God bless you, Kristie

Miracles still happen today, and they prove He exists.
God should be praised and exalted, for He is everywhere, and everyone is in His ultimate plan.

God bless,


SSTswimmer said...

Yep! God works everything out for good in the end!

Camden said...

Wow. I knew God would be working in Haiti after the quake, but to hear a personal testimony of God's grace is awesome! Haiti is a pretty messed up country that tried to mix voodoo with Christianity, and I honestly think that's one of the reasons the quake happened. Still, God's mercy and grace are increadible, even in the midst of hardship!


Araken said...

That is truly a miracle; praise God.

~Prism~ said...

Awesomeness! Love this post, chica.

TessieB said...

Wow, God is soo incredibly good to us!! Praise the Lord!!!