When All Things New first started, we had a few specific goals that we were out to achieve. Goals are and should be something that each of us as individuals, as families, as churches, and as organizations should set for ourselves and strive to achieve. When we do not have goals and dreams we tend to flounder and struggle to find a purpose. We started looking back at the initial goals we set for All Things New, and it is funny how GOD allowed us to reach almost all of these goals but oftentimes in much different ways than we anticipated. It is also funny how the goals we set for ourselves continue to change, mature, and develop the longer that we are in Haiti. Some of the things that we thought we wanted are no longer a priority while other things that were kind of an afterthought have come to the forefront of our ministry. While there were numerous initial goals, there were 2 that seemed a little bigger than the rest:
- Move the kids to better facilities.
- Provide a higher level of care for the kids.
When we first talked about moving the kids to better facilities, our thoughts and prayers always included purchasing land and building our own buildings. However, the longer we stayed in Haiti, the more we realized that this was not an important aspect of our ministry. I will explain why in an upcoming blog, but the gist of the reason is because we want to make sure that we are pouring money back into the community rather than building something for ourselves. You see, GOD had written a different story for All Things New than the one we had in our heads. His story was not about buildings, land, running water, or electricity. His story was about deliverance, rescue, and unity amongst organizations (like when we partnered with Hope Rising to move our kids or with Christianville to have a place to stay or with KORE to provide protein for our kids) and families (as the families of the children that we take care of came together in force to remove these kids from a terrible situation). Our story was small and boring, GOD’s story was absolutely incredible. We have since accomplished that first goal. Our kids are in a much better place, they do have running water, and they even have electricity occasionally (we would like to install some solar panels, batteries, and an inverter but we have to fundraise for these things). We may be renting 2 houses, but we can rent these houses for the next 10 years for the same amount of money that we would have needed to just purchase land not to mention everything else involved. We have been able to use the money that would have gone towards land to offer jobs to people in our community and we have been able to focus the attention we would have used on building to begin to really pray and think through what GOD has next for our ministry.
The second overarching goal we had was to provide a higher level of care for our children. To begin with, we believed that the first goal would allow us to accomplish the second goal. We learned very quickly we were incorrect. We came from a place where electricity, running water, nice homes, good clothes, etc. were a sign that you were cared for. This is not the case for most of the world. We found out the reality is that, for children, it is definitely more important to have people love you, be there for you, care when you leave, want you to come back home, and take care of you no matter what than it is to have a nice house. Our first goal should have been at the beginning, and is now, to make sure we surround our children with people who love them. That is not to say that we just hire a bunch of house moms and other employees. Our primary job is to find the right people to take care of our children. We cannot do it ourselves and we would not be that good at raising Haitian children in Haiti anyway, so we rely on the wonderful people that GOD has blessed us with! To say that we have reached this second goal would be a huge understatement because our children are loved, they are cared for, and even better than that…They know it.
Like I said before, our goals continue to change, mature, and even grow but these 2 things will always be a huge part of our ministry. If you follow our ministry consistently, you have seen the next 2 huge goals that GOD has placed on our hearts and you can read about them in 2 previous blogs: Job Creation and Discipleship. We never want to grow stagnant because we believe that GOD has us in here in Haiti for a reason. But we also want to celebrate and realize when 2 huge goals that we have worked years to attain have come to fruition, and they truly have. When I look back on how they happened, I am so glad that I am not the author of the story. If I were, All Things New would be this boring ministry with a few kids, a couple of employees, some nice land, and some well-built buildings (not built by me of course). When GOD writes the same story, He includes action (when we took the children from their old setting), unity (Hope Rising, Christianville, and the kids’ families), heartache that leads to renewal (the reason we had to move to start with), and intrigue (as you know daily life is full of it). We appreciate everything each one of you have done to help us get where we are, and we are so glad that you are a part of GOD’s story with us.