Today was spent teaching classes almost the entire day. In between breaks, I did my usual “Haiti thinking” and today’s thoughts were centered around communication.
Okay, I know we’ll have a translator with us at all times, but what about those times when I would like to say something personally to a child? How will that child understand what I’m trying to communicate? Should I try to use some kind of made-up sign language? Should I buy a book on “How to speak like a Haitian”?
To you it might sound silly, but to me this is a big thing. I want the kids to understand me. I want the adults in the nursing home to know how much I care. I want the families who are getting food relief to know that my heart will always be with them, and that I will continue to pray and care.
Well, you guessed it. My answer came from God. He spoke to me by way of my daughter Stephanie’s pictures. I looked at her face in picture after picture. Sometimes she was smiling. Other times she was crying. Still other times she was looking into the eyes of a child she was holding close to her heart. And, as the saying goes, “A picture is worth a thousand words.” In each and every picture I can “see” what Stephanie is saying. She’s saying, “I love you. I care for you. I’m here to help you. I want you to be happy. I want you to be fed. I want you to feel safe. I want you to go to sleep and be peaceful tonight.”
How will I speak and be understood while in Haiti? The same way everyone else will. I will speak with my heart. My heart will transform my outer being into the language of universal love. That’s just what Jesus does!
And, so it now is only forty four more days until departure. The excitement is growing!
PS A very special thank you to Stephanie for giving me permission to use photos from her previous trips to Haiti.