blog

Storytelling.

I don’t want to forget today.

What a privilege to sit with some of the most incredible leaders here in Haiti at Mission of Hope and talk about the power of storytelling and the role God has given each of us to proclaim His story—the story of redemption He is writing.

These people are world changers and have a passion for seeing God transform lives in Haiti. It’s just the coolest to serve with them!

 

50813496_10157149361492578_7950871762189680640_n

A Culture of Storytelling and the One.

Storytelling has become quite a popular term over the last few years. From advertisements, clothing brands, church lingo, and the non-profit world—storytelling is taking over.

I kind of laugh at how [us] millennials have taken over stories…at least, that’s what I thought. But I’ve had this realization over the last several months that maybe—just maybe—it wasn’t millennials who made storytelling cool…and maybe it’s been around longer than this new wave of trendy storytelling.

Turns out Jesus is a really big fan of storytelling—and he talked a lot about going after the one.

DCIM100MEDIADJI_0010.JPG

In a meeting in Haiti this week, I sat across the table from two Haitian men I deeply respect at Mission of Hope—men I’ve had the privilege of working with for years. They have a lot of responsibility in their roles and it’s evident they see their jobs as an avenue to serve others—it’s their ministry. They are strong believers in Jesus and greatly care for those they lead and influence.

We discussed the different areas of ministry, exciting things happening in each department, wins, hardships, challenges, and transformation stories. I asked, “How do we get people to see their stories as ones worth telling? Because they’re all so very worth it.”

Pastor Samuel, one of the men in the meeting responded, “Rachel, it’s about creating a culture of storytelling for each one. We have to help them understand all of their stories matter. And how they are helping other people’s stories. I want to help them see that.

I’m with Pastor Samuel—I want to help people see their contribution to the redemptive story God is writing in Haiti and around the world.

  • To help the gardener see how he is influencing people through his faithfulness, attention to detail, and kind attitude every single time he encounters someone.
  • To help the teacher see how she is literally shaping the amazing, bright, and hopeful futures for countless young boys and girls.
  • To help the accounting team know their diligence in reconciling accounts, cutting checks, and ensuring we all turn in our receipts allows the organization to run with integrity.
  • For the sweet elderly man at the Grace House to know how he blesses people each time he sits and plays dominos, dances with someone, or tells a joke no one understands but we laugh at him laughing at himself.
  • For the nurse at the clinic to know how when she stopped in the hallway and bent down to look at a sick baby girl at eye-level, she showed that baby’s mama she was seen and important.

2018 Haiti_October_RLD_HQ-1981 social

Today, sitting in the office around a table, talking about all the stories and all God has done in the lives of people—it sank in in a new way for me. It will always be about the one and it will always be about God’s redemptive story and His love for everyone. Always.

Here’s to storytelling and to remembering to trust the very best Author.

2018 Haiti_September_RLD_HQ-0481

True North: Trip 1: Les Anglais Medical Clinic

The clinic we served in a few weeks ago was the same clinic we were in days after Hurricane Matthew.

When I walked into the clinic this time, I immediately remembered what it was like back in October; I remembered where the hospital beds were lining the hallways, the faces of the people, & the weary doctors & staff.

I looked into each of the rooms & reflected on who was in those rooms & beds in October:

  • the babies with cholera & those literal life-giving IV bags.
  • the mamas & daddies standing over the beds holding their little ones’ hands praying the medicines would work.
  • the strength of each person as they had their wounds cleaned & bandaged.

This time, that very same clinic was vastly different. There is still a great need in the community, but there was order in the chaos. There were scars instead of wounds. There was a calm healing on faces of the clinic staff instead of a chaotic uncertainty of what to do.

I rounded one hallway where I vividly remember a beautiful little girl lying on a bed with an IV in her tiny arm, pumping life into her frail body. This time, there was no bed, but a waiting room full of parents & their little ones waiting to be seen by the Haitian malnutrition specialist to try to get their babes strong & healthy. What a gift!

This little girl marked me. We locked eyes, she pretended to be timid for about 2 seconds, & then she busted out giggling. I greeted her with a kiss on each cheek, which she returned again & again & again – giggling each time. A nurse next to me picked up my camera & snapped a few photos. I cherish these. This very same clinic hallway is where I was weary at the brokenness of this world & the hell that people go through, is the same hallway where I saw a tangible redemption & grace of God.

Redemption is evident. The Lord is making things new. It’s a promise & He’s faithful. And often, He gives us tangible glimpses of this holy work that He’s up to & that He’s invited us into. That week was a glimpse for me. He’s good & He’s doing good, always.

Screen Shot 2017-08-27 at 5.20.32 PMScreen Shot 2017-08-27 at 5.20.53 PMScreen Shot 2017-08-27 at 5.21.03 PMScreen Shot 2017-08-27 at 5.21.13 PMScreen Shot 2017-08-27 at 5.21.24 PMScreen Shot 2017-08-27 at 5.21.39 PMScreen Shot 2017-08-27 at 5.21.54 PMScreen Shot 2017-08-27 at 5.22.05 PM

Broken Bowl.

Well, I’m a sucker for handmade bowls at farmers markets sold by precious older friends. This one was supposed to be thrown out because of a crack, but Jim (the maker) filled it in with turquoise instead. I find it simply perfect.
.
There’s a lot of metaphor in there.

Senior: Cayla • Austin, Tx.

There’s something special about photographing high school seniors; they are full of personality, dreams, vision, wit, & fashion. Cayla’s senior session was one of my very favorites because it included sun flare, bluebonnets, & lots of laughter – all of which captured her vibrant personality! Cayla, you’re too fun! Keep shining bright.