HAITI (KTRE) - I'm 36 years old and spending the Fourth of July outside the United States for the first time in my life.
The mission team returned to Merger Thursday to hold another medical clinic. Once that was finished, we grabbed a sack lunch before visiting with members of the community.
I joined a group of six and an interpreter, and we took on the hot sun as it beat on us on the gravel roads. Our first visit was with a couple and their four children. The father told us he was blessed to have us there to see him. His smile was so big from the porch of his cinder block home that it was contagious. He told us that it doesn't matter where we're from or the color of our skin, that we're all a family of Christ.
On the way to the next house, we passed a boy around the age of 12. He was bringing water back to his house with a wheelbarrow. You may think, that has to be bad, having to carry water just to use it. Imagine being like this boy and walking on that gravel road without shoes.
We visited about three more families, who all had the same prayer request: that they become closer to God.
These are families who are the poorest I've ever seen. No running water, no electricity. Children hauling water without shoes. And they pray to become closer to God.
This Independence Day, I'm thankful to live in a country which allows me the true luxuries in life. Things these people couldn't even dream about. Like air conditioning and fully functional vehicles.
We have these luxuries because of the men and women who fought for us and our forefathers, who set up the U.S. government.
I'm keeping politics out of it. We are responsible for whom we vote into office, and we should be thankful for that right. I'm especially thankful for it after seeing what has happened to Haiti and its corrupt government, which allows its people to continue to live like this.