January 12, 2010 a 7.0 magnitude earthquake caused the mountains of Haiti to tremble. More than 300,000 deaths were a result of this horrific quake. The earthquake hit at 4:53 p.m. Only an hour later darkness fell on the country of Haiti leaving the people injured, scared, and separated from their families. Following the earthquake there were 52 recorded aftershocks that measured above 4.5. After the events of this terrible earthquake 2 years ago today, it is safe to say the country of Haiti will never be the same.
My husband and I are new missionaries here with BHM. Two years ago when the earthquake hit we were nestled in our homes in America. Now, living each day in Haiti there is not a week that passes that we do not hear someone refer to the earthquake. What was once an event we watched briefly on the news is now a very present reality for our neighbors. We sit side by side the many faces we saw in pictures crying in the streets 2 years ago after this catastrophic event. Over the past few months I have heard numerous stories about the day the earthquake hit.
One afternoon I was chatting with a friend of mine from church who was helping me learn Creole when she began to tell me about the earthquake. She had gone down the road a little ways to go shopping for the afternoon. She described the sound of the earthquake to be like a huge truck passing by - then everything began to shake. Cell phone services crashed, darkness fell, and fear struck to the core.
It took her two days to even make it back to her house to be reunited with her family. As she reflected on this terrible event tears rolled down her cheeks. She told me her entire family stayed in their house for 3 months after the quake. She was very fortunate to still have a home. In spite of the pain she felt reflecting on this awful day, she did not speak with a sense of hopelessness. Throughout every detail she shared she sat unwavering while starring forward.
We were sitting outside as she talked to me about the earthquake. When the recounting of the many events became too much, she would gaze up at the huge mountains beside her house and tell me she trusted completely in BonDye (God). She knows firsthand that He can move the very foundations of the earth and it is in Him alone we can completely trust.
This is one of thousands of stories that can be told about this day in history. Today, schools and businesses are closed and most families remain at home. This is a day to remember, to mourn, and to continue to trust in the One who can move the mountains. Many articles and stories you will read today about this event will tend to focus on the destruction of this horrific day. The damage from this huge quake was indescribable.
2 years later many buildings, homes, and churches have been rebuilt. Outside aid is still being received and is of great need to the people of Haiti. I would like to challenge you on this day to go deeper than thinking about the "stuff" that was lost or damaged. Allow yourself to think about the families who lost loved ones. Husbands who lost their wives, mothers who lost their children. A sense of uneasiness still plagues many of the people of Haiti.
Just a few weeks ago there was an incident at a local elementary school. Two large water trucks drove by Kenscoff school and caused the school to tremble a little bit. The children instantly began to panic thinking it was another earthquake. They began to flee out of the school. Several children were injured and had to be brought to the hospital at the mission due to the chaos that was brought on as a result of fear. This recent occasion is a very clear example that the earthquake of January 12, 2010 will never be forgotten by the people of Haiti. Pray for the people of Haiti today, pray that they will receive an incredible peace on this day of reflecting that can only come from the Lord.
The missionaries here at BHM have so many miraculous stories as a result of the earthquake. There have been thousands of people who have entered into a relationship with Jesus Christ due to the events of that day. The churches of Haiti are strengthening daily and the hand of the Lord is truly on his people here.
Lucy Dunn, 86, was visiting her family who are missionaries with BHM when the earthquake hit. A few nights ago as we were talking about the earthquake she said, "I am so happy the Lord allowed me to be here when the earthquake hit. I have loved getting to see Him at work! He is changing the hearts of the people of Haiti."
Remember Haiti today. Remember the works of our great God and trust in His ways for great is His faithfulness!