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Jesus said, "I have come so they can have real and eternal life, more and better life than they ever dreamed of." (John 10:10)

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

My Trip to Haiti - by Silas Snead

me with some of my new friends in Jeremie, Haiti

"tent-living" in Port au Prince
me with one of the orphan village's "mamas"
the kids did not speak English, but by the end of the week they all knew the word "SILAS"
2 meals a day served in a frisbee and brought back to their room
cooling off in the ocean
frisbee with one of the "grass cutters"
Dou Dou - the "gentle giant"
me and Robinson

The one word that comes to my mind about this whole Haiti trip is GIVE. Giving love. Giving friends to the friendless. God giving me an indescribable experience. During the trip, I met some people that I really enjoyed: The mission team, Dou-Dou (he drove the bus and has big muscles!), Robinson (one of the orphans there), Sonia (another orphan), and many more.
The most challenging parts of my trip were mainly when I was tired (the roosters woke us up a lot), and also when Mr. Jason (on our mission team) told me he'd pay me a dollar for every conch I ate (yuck!). I'm proud to say that I earned $3! One of the hardest times was when I was trying to lay down, but the orphans wanted me to play with them at all times. I prayed to God about it, and after that I had an incredible time with them.
It hurts your heart to see men working all day out in the sun cutting a field of grass with machetes and the only get paid $1/day. My dad threw a frisbee to one of them and then we threw it back and forth with them for a little while.
I got to film a practice session for Mr. Gerald (our worship pastor). He is teaching the orphan choir original songs to record a CD. They will use the money they make on the CD's to hire a music teacher for the orphans. You could hear the orphans singing "Bondye Bel..." all over the orphan village! ("Bondye Bel" means "Beautiful God" in Haitian Creole.)
I had a really great time on the trip when I played a soccer game with the kids. One thing I ate that I really liked was goat. (yum!) During the week my dad and I had silly bands and candy in our pockets to hand out to the kids. They really liked it. I made friends with an orphan named Robinson, and on the last day, I gave him my sunglasses.
Me and my dad climbed up on top of a sunken submarine...COOL! The ocean was the bluest ocean I'd ever seen, and I loved getting drenched by the humongous waves.
Something I learned about myself on the mission trip is that God can use even the smallest people to do his will (I was the only kid on the trip). It was also incredible to me that I could use my ability of playing to serve God. When you're trying to be a servant of God, be a servant to others. If there is another mission trip to Haiti, I would love to go. After the trip I committed to God that I would do whatever I can to go on another mission trip, and that I would do the best I can to serve Him here in Tennessee.
Thanks again for all your support and prayers!
Silas Snead, age 9

Thursday, March 31, 2011

We're off to Haiti!

Dear Friends,
Thank you so much for helping me to go on this mission trip! I was able to give $281 to my church for the "Crazy Love" offering, and over $1000 toward my trip. I will be leaving with my dad this sunday (April 3), and I will be returning the next Saturday (April 9). Thank you all for your kindness and support. I will be building, playing with the kids in the orphan village, and helping the kids to know more about Jesus. Please pray that I will have a safe trip and a great experience. I'll be posting an update of my trip when I get home. Above is a picture of me pointing to Jeremie, where I will be working.
Thank you all,
Silas Snead

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Silas' "Crazy Love" adventure!

The following post was written by Silas, our eldest, who has a love for painting/drawing and a heart for orphans. Please read his post and pray about being a part of his "Crazy Love" adventure....

"Hello. I'm Silas Snead. I'm 8 years old. I have decided to raise money for the orphan village my church is building in Haiti. I will be selling notecards made from pictures I have painted. This is one way that I can use my talents for God, even though I'm just a kid. I have been to the orphanage where my brother and sister used to live in Rwanda. I wished I could do more, and now I can.

Here's what God says we should do: 'Learn to do good. Seek justice. Help the oppressed. Defend the cause of the orphans.' (Isaiah 1:17) All the money I make will go to help the orphans in Haiti, and to help me be able to go there with my dad this spring to help as well. The money will help them have a school to go to, food to eat, a home to live in, and to learn about Jesus. By buying my cards, you will be able to help these kids too.
Please cklick on the "buy now" button to the right to purchase with a credit card, or email my mom at shellys1216@yahoo.com if you would like to order by check.

Also, your prayers can be powerful and effective, so please keep not only this endeavor in your prayers, but the orphan village as well, as the cholera has finally reached Jeremie. Two of our orphans there have died, and 8 others are sick. We are sending out an emergency medical team this week to help. Having the clinic there has already been a huge blessing! Thanks again!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

"Gotcha Day" one year anniversary!

What a fun day! "Gotcha Day" is the adoption word for the day we "got" our two newest family members, Savanna and Samuel. Today was the one year anniversary of that day and we set out to make it special and memorable!

We began our day by wearing matching shirts that proudly displayed the Rwandan flag...

Though we "stuck out" at church, we were also congratulated by so many in our church who love, support and participate in adoption. Then we came home for lunch and enjoyed Africa-shaped cookies.....with a "heart" right on Rwanda (or close to it, anyway! Its a pretty small country!)

We had a relaxing afternoon preparing a Rwandan meal (Rwandan Beef Stew, prepared by Art and the boys, and Rwandan Honey Bread prepared by Shelly - Savanna slept through most of this...hence the "relaxing afternoon"! ) Then we played some games and read books and began dinner! The only thing we regret is not having Orange Fanta bottles, which is what the kids drank with every meal while in Rwanda! ...on the list for next year...

Finally, we watched videos of our first meeting with Savanna and Samuel, and some of our time in Africa. We also enjoyed a FABULOUS slide show put together by one of the other moms who adopted from Rwanda when we did. It was great to see how everyone's Rwandan babies have grown so much over the last year in so many ways!

This has been such a whirlwind of a year, and it was so good to slow down today and take a look at all the progress that has been made, the bonds that have formed between parent and child as well as between siblings, and the positive changes that have occurred due to time, growth and God's amazing faithfulness. We look forward to this new year with great expectations and anticipation over what God will do next in our family to draw us closer together and make us more like Jesus. If you have the time, sit back and enjoy the following slide show of our first gotcha day, today's celebration, and some favorite photos of the last year! Thanks for all your prayers and support!