Day 19 – Thursday, March 8th
Relentless Scripture: Rom. 12:13
Relentless Focus: Handy and Hospitable
Relentless Example: “contributing to the needs of the saints, practicing hospitality,”
Today was one of those “get ‘er done” days for Pastor as he worked diligently to resolve some of his compound problems, especially those which present a less than welcoming atmosphere for his guests. For example, a portion of the PVC waterline clamps and fittings needed some repairs; the portable gas generator that we currently used to support the electrical needs required some maintenance. Also, the water supply line to my sink and toilet didn’t have enough head pressure to overcome the resistance to allow for adequate flow. In addition, at the other end of the hospitality rooms (missionary and guest housing) there were some electrical issues with one of the switch/plug outlet and supply lines. It seems like the never-ending story around here.
But when you’re in Pignon, Haiti, it’s not like you have access to a yellow page book or you can search the internet for a preferred list of craftsmen to call, nor can you just run down to your local Ace is the Place Hardware store for some parts. And even if you were able to, things done on Haitian time may not be sufficient in meeting an urgent or emergent need. So you learn to do without something entirely or at least for some period of time, or you learn to apply temporary fixes, band aids, and work around with what you have available, or you learn with some of the more critical equipment to build in redundancy (that is, if you can afford it). Like with any other home, if you live in it long enough you’re guaranteed to have trouble.
As I worked with Pastor in helping with his “things to do list” I was reminded that most Haitian Pastors are really pretty good handymen. They work two or three jobs and quickly learn about what it means to work out their faith in fear and trembling. If they have to handle it they do. If they can hand things off to others for the right reasons they do. But one thing a good handy man always does well is hand things off to God in never -ceasing prayer and praise, especially when it feels like life is in a constant state of repair! And this is what Pastor François excels in, a constant state of Prayer and Praise. Wow! I wonder from what Carpenter he learned that?!
A good friend of Pastor’s and three other men from the Washington, DC area arrived this afternoon to Pignon for a mission’s orientation/pioneer trip through their church. They are staying in Pastor’s hospitality rooms located above his residence alongside me. Pastor and his wife really try to make their home a welcoming one by practicing open heart hospitality along with some little comforts of home. Although it’s customary to tidy up the place before any guests arrive, what I appreciate most about their preparation was a little note Pastor placed on the walls and doors of the rooms. It simply said, “Welcome Dr. Greg Bennett We Love You!”
This was a great reminder to me that you can do all the things in the world to make any place look like a 5-star hotel, but without love, it really isn’t anything.
Tangible Need: Front Windows for the last two hospitality rooms.
Pray for Loving Haiti: Pastors who are under financial hardship and their families.
Pray for Me: Continue to help Pastor with his things to do list.