I went to the book shelf this morning to pick one of the many versions of the bible that I own. Over the years I’ve collected several versions of the bible, and have been reading them from Genesis to Revelation in a different translation. And for the past few years, I’ve been reading them electronically on my tablet. This year, I decided to go back to the New International Version (1984), and to paper Bible. That led me to picking one of the biggest bibles on the shelf. It is a leather bound study bible that a group of Christians gave me before I joined their ranks.
The bible was presented to me on the last day of the two week trip that I was a part of in 1991. I had gone on this trip with 25 Christians who were going to Haiti for two weeks in the summer to help lay a foundation for a church building, play with children, and to share the story and love of Jesus to this impoverished country. How I got there is an interesting story that will be told at another time, but I had lost my bible that I purchased specifically for this trip, and was extremely angry with a God that I did not believe in at the time. The team decided to present me with a bible that was an exact replica, but the leather bound one was the best that they could do (it was an upgrade!). How they found a bible of that quality and likeness (the box that contained the bible had the same design as the hard cover of the one that I lost) is itself a miraculous story. I have to say, it is one of the most important gifts I have ever received in all of my life, as it led me to the God who I didn’t believe in becoming the One whom I live for!
This morning, as I flipped through the bible, I saw the notes that each person wrote in it. It’s been 22 years, but each person’s expression as I received that bible is etched in my mind. I wondered about each one, and where they might be today; each one of them, ages 13 to 45, have deeply impacted my life and contributed to the man that I have become, and I am grateful! I prayed and thank God for them this morning.
Interestingly enough, when I got in my car to get to the office, the Canadian Broadcasting Company (CBC) aired a story that the picture below came from. On the same day, Jesus reminded me of the place where I first fell in love with Him in two different ways. In Haiti, 22 years ago, I had a phrase, “coinkidink,” to describe what seemed like a coincidence that the Christians would say were God orchestrating events that are in His plan. This is one of those moments of “coinkidinks.”
Although much has been done to recover from the devastating earthquake that rocked that country four years ago, much work still needs to be done. So, I am reminded to pray for this country that has such a special place in my heart. Would you join me in lifting the people of Haiti up?