Since we returned to Haiti, there seems to have been a neverending list of things to do, all of which require money. Everyone and his brother seems to be in need. The average Haitian makes between two and four U.S. dollars a day, and that’s if they have a job. Unemployment hovers at around 60%. Most people here live on a shoestring budget, with each individual trying to earn just enough money to carry them through the day. It also takes money, and lots of it, to keep a ministry running. At times, we feel like acrobats twirling plates atop sticks. The plates have to be in constant motion or else they’ll come crashing down. Keeping the plates spinning looks so effortless, but in reality it requires the performer’s undivided attention. Keeping the whole thing going is not always as easy as it looks.
The other day, I was complaining to Prit, saying, “It seems that every time I turn around, somebody needs money.” His reply was profound: “It takes money to live and to someone that is in tremendous need, but doesn’t have the resources to meet that need, money is life.” That statement totally changed my perspective about people. It was a genuine “eureka” moment for me. It made me realize that we can extend LIFE to others with the resources the Lord has entrusted to us. Whether it is the means of giving someone an education or sending them to the doctor, money is life.
Of course, with our giving, we become recipients of that life-flow as well. I think of the sheer joy we receive when presenting a worker with a brand new laptop of his own, knowing he has never owned anything that nice in his entire life. Then there’s the young man that hugged his computer bag we brought back for him. When I offered to cut the price tag off for him, he told me, “No, leave it on. It just reminds me that it’s brand new!” Every time we return to Haiti, we always try to bring back a new shirt and tie for our leaders. It seems like such a small thing to do for those who labor tirelessly out of love for God and his church. The smiles radiating from their faces make all the shopping that went into the gifts totally worth it because they imparted life.
As we reflect on this Easter weekend and celebrate the death, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus Christ, we give thanks that the Lord has given us the privilege of partnering with him to impart his life to others. Whether it’s helping someone start a small business or helping someone else bury their loved one, we become channels of blessing to those less fortunate than us. And like our Father, who bankrupted Heaven to send us his son, may we always be willing not only to give to others, but to give in a lavish, kingly fashion as well.