Haiti is teaching me about prayer and worship

I'm in Haiti[ See my other recent posts about my trip to Haiti ]

This morning I read from Psalm 114:7, “Tremble, O earth, at the presence of the Lord, at the presence of the God of Jacob.” That’s exactly what’s happening here in Haiti. The earth trembled at the presence of the Lord that is so obviously moving here in Haiti. I don’t know if it’s being covered by the media back in the US, but it should be because I’m not sure what else there is to report — everything we see here in Haiti is consumed by praise, worship, preaching, and a massive revival outbreak. Sure, there’s tanks and military people walking around with big guns. And many buildings are flat, but that’s just on the surface. The real news is that the hearts of these people are passionately worshipping God everywhere almost non-stop. It’s incredible.

When I get back to the US and can upload the daily video blogs I’ve been shooting all day every day, you’ll see more of this. I have talked to many, many random Haitians over the past several days and every single one of them talks about Jesus within the first 5 minutes of the conversation, even if you don’t bring Him up. When I ask if they are upset with God or questioning Him for the tragedy, not a single one says yes. In fact, it’s just the opposite — they appear shocked that I could even suggest such a thing. They are all worshipping Him for sparing their lives and for sending the earthquake to soften their hearts and deliver them from Santeria. There is literally dancing in the streets!

This whole experience continues to break my heart for the current state of the American church. We are so apathetic, so self-centered, so lethargic and focusing on all the wrong things. In some ways, I want to see an earthquake to hit our country, totally devastate us, strip us of everything but Jesus, and pray that our churches will pave the way for hope and rival in our nation instead of enabling the spiritual rut.

In America, when I sit in a small group and ask for prayer requests, first there’s silence while people try to think of something, and then 95% of the prayer requests will be for physical needs of themselves or someone they know. Don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with that, but here in Haiti, the physical needs are overwhelming — they live under bedsheets strung up by sticks and wire, have only the clothes on their back, and struggle to find food and water. Yet as I pray with Haitians, many of them do not ask me to pray for those needs, they ask me to pray for their spiritual needs. Just this morning several Haitians said to me, “Ask God to transform my heart,” and, “Pray God will make me a mighty man of prayer,” and, “I want you to pray that God will teach me the Bible more.” I don’t even know when I’ve ever heard prayer requests like that… or when I’ve even asked of those things for myself. So I pray for them, and they in-turn pray for me with a passion that makes my prayers feel so weak and insignificant.

I can’t wait to show you some of the video footage and stories we’ve been hearing in Haiti. Look for them later this week or early next week when I’m back on my own Internet connection and can upload them. Here in Haiti it takes 50+ hours to upload a mobile version of a video over wifi. 2K upload = fail. That’s why I only have two videos posted: Day 1 and Day 2.

Check out today’s photos

Again, I posted some of today’s Haiti pictures on my Facebook page. Check ’em out!

Also keep your eye on the official “Youth Ministry Advance Team: Haiti” Facebook page and the official YMATH Twitter account for updates from the rest of the team members.

Today is our last day here in Haiti. Tomorrow we start the long drive back to Santo Domingo before we fly back to the US on Wednesday morning.

Also follow my Haiti updates here:

Posted on February 15, 2010

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