The Family

The Family
Justice, Logan, Jacy Klaire, Joy, Josie Kate, Luke, Megan, Judah, Kerry, Jaxon

Monday, November 10, 2008

Bob Benfield Reports on Latest Trip

My Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

I want to start by saying that this update to Kerry's BLOG has been a long time coming. I am just getting back to the routine of life as we know it in America. I still dream about the people in Haiti and how they are struggling to survive every single day. The sights, sounds, and smells are still fresh in my mind as I often close my eyes and am right back there. This was my first trip to Haiti, but I can promise you, just as I promised the men, women, and children in each church I spoke in, this will NOT be my last trip.
From 1979 to 1986 I had the opportunity to travel all over the world as a Medical Diver in the United States Navy. Prior to this trip, I had been to 32 foreign countries. Haiti made 33. I can honestly tell you, I have never seen poverty to the extent that I saw during this trip.
One thing that truly amazes me, is the love that I felt with the men I went with. Kerry, Tracy, and Toby constantly showed genuine Christ like love and compassion not only towards me but to everyone they came in contact with. When I look at Pastor Caesar, an awesome man of God, I think of 1 Chronicles 4:10, "And Jabez called on the God of Israel, saying, Oh that thou wouldest bless me indeed and enlarge my coast, and that thine hand might be with me, and that thou wouldest keep me from evil, that it may not grieve me! And God granted him that which he requested." As Pastor Caesar and Kerry stood in Kerry's living room watching the TV in horror, as the hurricanes ripped through Haiti leaving thousands dead and hundreds of thousands homeless, the Lord spoke to them in a mighty way. Again the faith of these two men astound me. 1 Chronicles 4:10 shows where Pastor Caesar's heart was. He was seeking Gods face in hopes that God would still bless him and bring more Haitian people to trust Him as their Lord and Savior, to enlarge his coast. To Pastor Caesar and Kerry, it wasn't a matter of asking God if they could help, it was a matter of getting out of Gods way so He could help and get the details worked out. It was awesome to watch God at work providing more than anyone could have ever expected or even imagined. To God be the glory because He is worthy.
When Kerry called me and asked if it was possible for me to take off from work and go with them, I can't tell you the honor and pride I felt when I asked my wife Shelly what she thought about me going to Haiti. She said "you mean your bags aren't packed yet?" I knew that work would not be a problem either. My boss, Clayton Todd is a wonderful man of God who loves the Lord in a way that makes me envious. His response was much like Shelly's. So it was set. I was on the list to go. Then through the endless giving of so many of you, God was evident once again.
After we had all of the bags packed, our human nature kicked in and Satan tried to tell us it couldn't be done... but we were bathed in prayer by people all over the world, and let me tell you about the power of prayer. We went through customs and had our bags checked without even so much as second glance from the authorities here in the US or in Haiti. Again. praise His holy name.
Getting off the plane in Miami to catch another plane to take us to Porta Prince, so many things could and probably should have gone wrong. But He had everything under control. Micah 7:7 tells us "Therefore I will look unto the Lord; I will wait for the God of my salvation: my God will hear me." It still blows my mind to see how we have blinders on and see tunnel vision when God see the big picture from the beginning. I love the last part of the verse, my God will hear me...
Once we arrived in Haiti, God was just getting warmed up. We met with our driver from the House of Bread who took us by there first and then on to Saint Marc to Pastor Caesar's house. We didn't waste any time... We started packing the bags for distribution because we were going to give food to two separate churches the next morning. I want to say to you reading this BLOG, I know that you yourself couldn't go, but you were there through us. We were able to provide TO them through your generous gifts and prayers. You were a huge part of this trip. In Matthew 6:19-20, Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: Every life we touched was a prayer answered and YOU who gave by giving money or who gave by being on your knees and keeping us in continuous prayer, had just as much in this trip as we did.
The distributions went great and we were able to give the Haitian people food for their stomachs as well as spiritual food for their hearts. It was said that we provided a "Blessing from the Blesser" I just want to say for the record, I was the one who was Blessed. Words that I am typing now cannot express the true feeling of how I felt.
On the last day of our stay at Pastor Caesar's house, our bags were packed and we were just about ready to leave to go back to the House of Bread to spend the last night before going to the airport the next morning. As we were standing in the court yard at Pastor Caesar's, A young girl that works for Pastor, came over to where I was standing, she had a small bowel of water and a small brush. She got on her hands and knees and began scrubbing my tennis shoes. Shortly after that, she was joined by yet another girl who had some type powder that looked to be similar to AJAX or Comet. The second girl would sprinkle the powder over my shoes as the first girl would scrub them with a brush. How selfish am I? That was TRUE SERVANTHOOD
displayed before my very eyes. I am so unworthy. God truly broke my prideful heart that day in the courtyard of Pastor Caesar's', by working through two beautiful souls that had NO OTHER desire but to serve Him with all of their hearts. As I stood there with uncontrollable tears pouring down my face, while these two young ladies cleaned my dirty, worn out shoes, I thought of the parallel, isn't that just like Jesus Christ... only He can take an old dirty worn out soul and make it clean and new. Lesson learned...
If you have never had the opportunity to go on a mission trip, I urge you to get your passport ready. Your life will NEVER be the same.

In His grip,

Bob Benfield
Titus 3:5

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