The cool, light rain continued throughout Tuesday and into Tuesday night in our part of Haiti.
Checking frequently on the Internet, we read reports of the severe damage along the southern coast of Haiti, flooding on LaGonave and Port-au-Prince and thankfully watched the radar clear as the hurricane winds weakened over the mountains.
We watched in astonishment after friends, and acquaintances shared my blog post on praying specifically for Haiti, as the number of page views soared into the hundreds and then thousands.
We realize that some of those page views represented family groups, or small groups praying. The large numbers of people praying brought great comfort to us and others in Haiti.
Now I don't want to lessen in any way the severe damage in the South and in families who lost everything.
However, reality is that the damage and loss of life in Haiti from Hurricane Matthew could have severely affected tens of thousands or even millions more had the storm shifted more to the east or had the rain totals reached predicted highs.
Some will talk about luck or chance, but we firmly believe that everyone who offered up a prayer for the safety of Haiti played an important role in reducing the damage. We also believe that continued prayers are vital for the recovery period.
Even before the early damage in the south was being reported, people started to ask for relief funds and post pictures. Unfortunately, some of the pictures people were posting turned out to be from past severe storms or from other countries.
Specific prayers after Hurricane Matthew:
-Immediate rescue for the stranded. Medical care, shelter, food and drinking water for the people in need.
-Restored communications between family and friends.
-No further damage from flooding, rains, weakened structures and damaged roads. No outbreaks of cholera, typhoid, mosquito borne illnesses or other diseases.
-Repair of roads and bridges so that emergency staff and supplies can reach those in most need.
-Funding, especially that the donated funds are given to agencies who will use them for the
people and recovery. Too many times in the past the money never benefits those it was donated to help.
-Wisdom to help in ways that will benefit people long term, including but not limited to: relocation of those in unsafe areas, building safe houses, micro loans, helping with education of children, medical bills, jobs, replacement of livestock and possessions....
-Building of safe [hurricane, flooding, earthquake, heat, ...] houses for those who need new homes.
-Political stability: Presidential elections which still need to occur in a timely fashion and in a fashion that limits corruption. As this did not occur in the last elections it will be even harder this time...
-Continuation of relationships started or strengthened during the storm. That together Haitians and expatriates can work for a stronger country, families, government, infrastructure, and faith.
-Prayers for those who live in the path of Hurricane Matthew as it continues north.
We are praising the Lord for His faithfulness. Thank you to everyone one who is joining us in prayer for Haiti and her people during the next days and weeks of recovery.