One of my primary purposes in going to Haiti was to train and help prepare vet professionals to go and help people in the countryside. When I first arrived here in 2006, it was the biggest culture shock of all. I was assaulted by the crowds, the heat, and the smell of burning garbage. It was chaos.
In the second year I was here I had somebody steal stuff out of my house, I was exposed to rabies, and I contracted Dengue fever. I would get around 30 phone calls per day and 10 email messages with vet problems from missionaries around the country, or from a Haitian friend who had a crisis. I was burning both ends of the candle and it was very overwhelming. CVM would call and ask how I was and because of the way I was raised, I would say that things were great. I would ask them to please pray for this ministry or these people, but I never said, “Can you pray for me?”
I got depressed. When you’re depressed you’re in this hole in which you can’t see any way out. I decided that if I wasn’t here it would be better. I wrote a note and then I said to God, “you know the hell I’m in and I know it’s a sin but I think you’ll forgive me for this.”
But miracles happened that day. After taking a lethal dose of tranquilizers, I was discovered by my vet technician, Etienne. I wasn’t breathing when he arrived but he prayed and I started to breathe again. With the support of CVM, I admitted myself into an inpatient program for depression and exhaustion. After several months of healing and rest, I returned to Haiti with a new sense of purpose.
Recently, when I heard about the impending arrival of hurricane Matthew, I asked Etienne to go to the coast and warn the people there. We were able to warn thousands of people and, as a result, they evacuated the beach areas. I think, if I hadn’t been there to warn them, what would have happened to those people?
Now I know that God preserved my life because my mission isn’t finished yet and He wants me to keep working for the well-being of the Haitian people. That’s why I’m here. I’m here for animals but, ultimately, I’m here for people because I need to share Jesus with them and they need to see Jesus in me.
Yes, Haiti is chaos when you first arrive. But I’ve come to see it as a beautiful chaos.
Want to hear more from Kelly? Visit her webpage and sign up for her prayer letter!