How is it already March? My goodness, February was an extremely busy month for the Robert family. I feel like I blinked and here’s March.
I had Hope Mommies Retreat at the beginning of the month in Giddings, Texas. Then Bryan and I were both in at Mission of Hope, Haiti the 11-16, and Bryan had Key Men Invitational retreat when we returned, oh and my mom and sister came into town too. It was a whirlwind of a month, but such a sweet one as well. By far, my favorite month this year (wink wink). So much happened its hard to all compartmentalize everything, but I will try.
Hope Mommies Retreat
First: Hope Mommies Retreat 2016. What an incredible and refreshing time that was. I am still amazed when I think about it. The leadership loved on us moms so well, and honored our babes in such a sweet way. New friendships were formed and God showed up big, and he greatly encouraged my heart. The loss of Arden and Nasa has forever changed me. I am not the same woman I was before we lost them. Yet, in the midst of the pain and confusion, I know my God is at work. He is bigger than my fear, my questions, my doubt, my worry, my anger. He is faithful still, and his purpose will prevail. I can only see a slice of the pie (if even that) but he can see the whole entire pie. His view is better than me, so I can trust him because he is trustworthy. He has purposed this in my life, so I would get to know him in my suffering. He only needs me to let go of control. So, while I may not see the visible working of his hand in this current season, I know he is working. He is chiseling away, refining me, molding me into a rare jewel.
Haiti: Mission of Hope
We have officially been back from Haiti for 2 weeks now. And, man, my heart is still aching for that sweet country and longing to be sitting on the dirt ground, with a baby in my lap, just loving the people of Haiti. This trip was different than before for several reasons: 1) both of us are in a completely new season of life 2) we went down with a completely different group of people-families 3) we did different things than before. Yet, there were still so many familiar things: 1) the food we ate was still just as yummy as before, maybe even better 2) the people are still so kind, loving, and full of joy 3) the country hasn’t progressed much in the last 3 years 4) they are just as broken as I am. It was a rich 6 days away, and I just love what God is doing there! It’s incredible! While there are so many stories to share, I will share one of my favorites: it was on Friday afternoon, spending time visiting with Fransouia. She was this precious elderly woman, around the age of 60 (maybe) but her sickness and frailty made her look around 85. When we entered her home, made of straw, wood and sticks, she was laying on a bamboo mat. I thought to myself, how long has she been laying there? She had been sick for a while, and had no strength to stand up and move. She had no family and wasn’t even from the village of Bercy. She had no one to take care of her. Our team conversed with her for a bit and then we decided we would come back after lunch to bath her, wash her clothes, and give her something to eat. It was a beautiful afternoon spent being the hands and feet of Christ. The men washed her clothes, by hand-no washer and dryer, while the women gave her a sponge bath, put some fresh clothing on her, washed her dishes and fed her. I have never experienced anything like it before, to be able to love on someone who does not have the means to repay you. I will never forget that time.
We also were able to meet Ivenson, thank you Lord! it was by far my favorite part of the trip. I will never forget the moment I saw him. I ran to him, and gave him the biggest embrace. We only had about 20 or 30 minutes with him because the older kids at MOH School have chapel on Monday and they had already started once we arrived, so we had to wait until it was over. I was a little frustrated, to be honest, because I looked around and saw the other people meeting their sponsor kids who were younger. It didn’t seem fair…But, while our time with Ivenson wasn’t as long as I would have liked it to be, it was definitely sweet. We were able to learn where we lives and how many brothers and sisters he has. We learned what God is teaching him and how we can specifically be praying for him. It was just great to be talking face to face instead of through a letter.
I plan to do an extensive Haiti blog post, but right now I think this is all I can do. We are still processing through all the Lord did and showed us, and adjusting to American culture, which I must say has been a lot more difficult this time around. Please continue to pray for us as we wait expectantly on the Lord.