Recently, I was able to enjoy a refreshing trip to Florida to surprise my father for his birthday. My siblings also flew to the Sunshine State and then drove to the international airport to pick me up. We piled into the back of my uncle's minivan and he drove us to our parents where my sister had informed my parents that a delivery would be made. My father loved it and was taken completely by surprise! He disappeared for a moment and returned after calling his boss and letting him know he would not be working the rest of the week. We ate, laughed, visited a botanicals garden, laughed, enjoyed a road trip, laughed, did some shopping...or should I say looking, and laughed some more. I enjoyed some time to myself swimming and enjoyed sitting in the sun with my sister and chatting with my mom. Mom and Dad drove me to the airport to return home and I enjoyed my time alone with them. My sister used to say I waited to have children because I had issues with sharing my toys. I think she is right, I have issues sharing and loved having time with Mom and Dad by myself....spoken like the middle child huh!
I have never flown out of country before and I had only flown once by myself from IN to GA where my girlfriend landed in the same airport and met me. She was a security blanket for me. I asked the Lord to send me a friend on my flight. My new friend Birdy would be flying out of country on the same day on the same airline but on a different flight. I secretly hoped she would be on this flight for some mysterious reason. As I settled into my seat on the plane, the man beside me began to snooze and I realized that the friend the Lord has sent me was not a person but Him. I spent time in my Bible and listened for the Lord to lay questions on my heart and then the answers . It was good and just the quiet I needed after the hustle and bustle of saying good-bye over and over again in an attempt to get out the door to the airport.
After the first 24 hours there, things were a bit bumpy. I wondered why I had thought this was a good idea to try to relax returning to the culture of go, go, go. My sister wanted opinions on paint colors and I needed to pick up some hardware for a project My Dear is working on so we headed to a home improvement store. I quickly left the vehicle and let the others know that I was going on inside to start looking. When I walked through the door, I saw the tall, dark figure in his orange apron positioned to be the "greeter." I am always on the look out for Haitians when in Florida. I walked over to the man and greeted him. He returned the greeting and in typical Haitian style, I asked how he was. He said he was blessed. I shared that I was also blessed. The Lord showed both of us that we were having a meeting of believers. Willie told me that he used to be scared to talk to people and then he realized he had really important information to share. Willie stood with such height and authority, it surprised me that he would be insecure...a place I occasionally find myself. This man was a pep rally for my spirit and I was so thankful for the way the Lord settled my anxious heart in the form of a tall, strong man from South America.
On the way back to Haiti, I was in the same exact seat on the plane. I spoke with a young man waiting for the plane. I think it was strange for me to see a Haitian person eating an extra large Steak and Shake burger and therefore struck up a conversation. I enjoyed talking with this young man who was in the states to acquire about a soccer scholarship to attend college as long as he could get his visa. I enjoyed talking with him and sharing what I knew to be true about the United States and hearing about the opportunities for him in Haiti. We talked again at the airport in Haiti and talked about our faith. He was happy to know we were both Baptist. He was fun.
I found my seat and waited for others to load on the plane. It was surprising to me how quickly I could get through all of the lines with just me and a carry-on. A lady walked down the aisle of the plane with a small child and pitched her diaper bag in the seat beside me. I pulled it to myself to let her know I would watch it. Sometime later, the lady returned to the seat with the cutest little guy. I would guess he was 18 months old. He chattered and smiled at me unlike most babies in the country who are unsure of my white skin. This little guy was so stink'n precious. He sat so sweetly on his mama's lap. I enjoyed seeing his eyes get big when we took off and landed. He enjoyed his cookies and chattered about them while he ate them. He mimicked my sounds as I tried to occupy him while his mama completed the customs forms. After landing, his mama allowed me to hold him while she retrieved the luggage in the overhead bin. Oh what a mushy little guy! We looked out the window together as he spotted the "ti machin" at work below....just like my boy, he liked things with wheels. This little boy has no idea of how he ministered to me that day. The very person I would plan to avoid seeing, a baby boy, was the very person that brought more healing to my heart. That week would have been the due date of our son and the Lord sent a chunky legged, dark-skinned, bright smiling little boy; a tall, dark, bald man and His Son so that I might know His presence. What a good Father!
*There are no photos on this post out of respect and privacy to those who do not know me but allowed the Lord to use them in my life anyway.