PS 34:3

Oh, magnify the LORD with me, and let us exalt his name together! ~Psalm 34:3

Friday, August 19, 2011

Middle of August Snapshot

We’ve been staying pretty busy down here trying to get this place up and running for our kids to move in.  We were shooting for moving them in earlier this week, but it looks like it’ll be more like Sunday or Monday.  We finally got their mattresses yesterday and have all of their beds up.  We have a few more minor details to take care of before they can move in: putting up shower curtains, installing a door on the depot, meeting with the nannies and making a bed frame for the nanny for the boys house.   So, not too much longer and we’ll be moving these kids in.  They are so excited to move in and about half of them run down to our site each day to see what they can help us with.  They have been so helpful!  A lot of them will offer to play with Faith or take her for a ride in her “machine” or stroller (that we just got out of the deuce).  They are awesome with her and keep her well entertained so I can work on some other things around the site.
            As many of you have heard, just last week we got running water!!  Our water tower is finally finished and hooked up.  No more carrying 5-gallon water buckets to our toilet or bucket baths :-).  Praise the Lord for running water!!!  We were also able to unload our deuce this past weekend, which made it feel like Christmas in August.  Let me tell you, the first night in our own bed was AMAZING!  We have not been able to stretch out like that in a long time.  (For those of you who don’t know, we had been sharing a twin size bed for the past 3 months- which was fine, but it was a little tight.)  That was the best night sleep we’ve had in a while :-).  We were also able to unload some other items from our deuce (our couch, keyboard, crib, pots and pans, and some other miscellaneous pictures) which definitely make our house feel more homey.
            These past few weeks we were able to finish up building a tool room (instead of using the girls house for tool storage), the depot (storage for things people donate), the water tower, making shelves and storage spaces for the kids, assembling the rest of the bunk beds and clearing out a space in front of the fence for our kids to have a soccer field. 
            Another update is that we got a dog two weeks ago!  Cassie, our 9 year old German Shepherd, is a huge answer to prayer!  Andrew and I had been praying for and searching for a German Shepherd for a while now.  A few weeks back, our friend Michelle who is also with Hands and Feet, told us that some of her friends in Port Au Prince were trying to get rid of two of their dogs, one a German Shepherd.  We were so excited about this and finally picked her up about two weeks ago.  She has been amazing!  She is really good with Faith and doesn’t run outside the fence even when the gate is open (unless Andrew or I are out there).  She hasn’t even eaten any of the chickens that will periodically run inside our fence (although one of these times she might get one :-).  Our kids absolutely love her too!   
            We are really excited about moving the kids in and giving them a much nicer place to live!!  We can’t wait to finally be able to pour into their lives and get to know each of the kids, like we’ve planned on doing for so long.  Andrew already has several Bible stories prepared that he wants to teach them.  At the same time we’re a little anxious and nervous, ok, if we’re honest- a lot!  We feel a little overwhelmed, at the moment, at the thought of trying to raise 31 kids up in the Lord.  What a huge responsibility!!!  We also won’t be able to just send them home for the evening so we can have a nice quiet dinner as a family :-).  Our space on the property is quite compact, so there’s not a lot of space between all of our houses, so it’ll be pretty loud.  But overall, we’re excited about being able to be a mom and dad type figure in their lives.

-       Praise the Lord that we got our residency papers two weeks ago!!  We had gone several times to get them and they weren’t ready, but this last time they were.  Now we don’t have to leave the country every 90 days to renew our visas.
-       The progress that has been made!  Praise the Lord for the safety of the workers as they finished the water tower.
-       Praise the Lord for providing us an amazing guard dog, Cassie.
-       We were able to unload some things from our truck that make it feel more like home.  Praise the Lord for being able to have some comforts from home.
-       Pray for us to be able to finish up quickly so the kids can move in this next week!  Things take so much longer and there are so many interruptions in the day. Pray that they would stay to a minimum so that we would be able to finish up for the kids.
-       Pray for God’s grace and patience to shine through us as we prepare to care for 31 new kids of a different culture and language.  Please pray that God would give us an amazing amount of patience wisdom and understanding as we work with these kids.
-       Pray for God to give us a clear vision of how He would want us to raise these kids.  Pray that God would show us how best to discipline these children so they can become more like Him.
-       Pray for the 31 kids as they begin to transition over to their new home.  As there will be lots of changes, pray for flexibility and obedience as we begin to establish authority here.  
-       Pray for the nannies that will be working with the kids.  Pray that they would have a tremendous heart for these children and that they would show them what it looks like to follow whole-heartedly after Christ.
-       Please continue to pray for our language learning.  For the most part, we can communicate if they will speak slowly.  But pray that we would continue to pick it up quickly and we’d be able to communicate enough to teach the kids. 
-       Continue to pray for our marriage that it would only grow stronger and stronger as we both draw nearer to Christ.  Pray that we would have His wisdom in raising our own daughter in the Lord.  I pray that we would be able to maintain a healthy balance between ministering to these kids and keeping our own family a priority.

Thank you so much for all your prayers, support and love!! 

For His Glory,
   ~The Suttons

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Cassie, the newest addition to the Grand Goave family!

The kitchen on the far left, dining area in the middle and the depot on the right for storage.

Kitchen, dining area & depot (from a different angle)

Kids kitchen (a work in progress)

Our awesome water tower!  We're gonna paint Hands & Feet under the cross at some point.

Our house is on the left, the girls on the right, the boys in the top right corner and the bath house is in the top center, you can see a little sink on the outside of the girls side if you look closely.

Left to right: kitchen, gate, our house and girls dorm in corner.

Our driveway heading out to the main road.  We own all the way from the water tower (where I'm standing) to the road (which you can't see here.)

Sunday, August 14, 2011

End of July Snapshot

We wanted to send out a quick to let people know what we are up
to lately.  We had a great time with family and friends back in the
States the past two weeks.

Our flight back home on Monday the 25th through JFK Was pretty
interesting. We had a bomb scare which caused us to almost miss our
flight, but God is so good!  After an hour and a half of waiting
outside, they finally let us back in- what a mad house!!!  They
finally got us up to the counter 5 min before our flight was supposed
to take off!!  We were expecting them to put us on a different flight,
but he didn't.  We still had to get through a long line of security
all in 5 minutes.  The first ladies we talked to told us to go wait in
the long line. Then one of the ladies checking boarding passes took us
up to the front of the security line.  Wow- thank you Lord!!!  Then
Faith and I ran up to the gate, letting Andrew get all the bags, and
the gate agent (who was Haitian) acted like we were long lost friends.
 She just took Faith in her arms and started talking to her like they
were best friends.  Then she realized that our seats were not
together, so she, still holding Faith, got on the plane and helped us
get seats together.  What a God orchestrated time at JFK!!! Thank you
so much for your prayers- we made it back to Grand Goave safely and
only a few hours later than expected.

We got back to our house and found so much progress!!!  We were blown
away at all that had been done while we were gone.  We currently have a
group of 8 here from Wisconsin.  They have been a tremendous help as
well!!!  Just to give you a quick on the construction, the
houses are all painted, storm flaps are up on the boys and girls
dorms, all the boys bunk beds are made, the toilets are in and
plumbed, the water tower is built, the kitchen house/dining area is
framed and we're working on the roof for it today!!! So lots of
progress being made- praise the Lord!!