Piti Piti Na Rivé

“We have a saying in Creole I want to teach you. ‘Piti piti na rivé’. That means little by little we will arrive. One step at a time. In Haiti, sometimes they are very very small steps. Sometimes we go backward. But it is important to keep taking steps, even though they are small. Never give up. Never lose hope. One day, maybe not during my lifetime, but one day, we will get there.”

-Margaret Trost, On That Day Everybody Ate

As if I could forget, Facebook keeps reminding me that this week, one year ago, was my first time ever in Haiti. However, after living here this summer and returning back, I do tend to forget some things about that first week. I forgot how wrecked my heart was leaving Haiti my first visit. I forgot I experienced a plethora of emotions that felt unnatural for anyone to experience all at one time. I forgot that was the week I began taking little steps to truly trusting God and what He had in store for me and this awe-inspiring country.

As I returned back to Haiti this January I was overfilled with joy and excitement. Haiti had taken little steps while I was away, and I was thrilled to get to learn all about them. The familiar faces had smiles to share and stories to dispense. I got to see and hear about the steps that were taken while I was away; small, large, and even backwards. I got to reconnect with a country that I now call home for the next few years; and there is nothing like returning home after being away. The reality that my next steps in life are going to be taken in tandem with this community is enough to always put a smile on my face as I drift to sleep.

My first few weeks here have been filled with inventorying, sourcing equipment, and plenty of e-mails and conversations about the project at hand. The prospect of getting to come alongside and work with the community to create economic opportunity, enduring families, and spiritual maturity is both exhilarating and daunting. I’m reminded in moments of doubt that I have a God I can trust, so I take another step.

Yesterday I went in to Port-Au-Prince so I could spend the night at the guesthouse and be driven to a restaurant supply store in the morning to price some equipment. I was supposed to have hit this store up at an earlier date, but as things tend to happen here, plans changed. I was annoyed at the mild inconvenience that packing up my needs for the night had caused me (don’t worry, deep down I knew I was being dumb). As usually is the case, the disruption to my plans turned out to all be a part of God’s plan.

Due to the change of plans I had the serious pleasure of joining a week-long mission team’s final meeting before they departed the next morning. I got to listen in as the team shared one by one the ways in which Haiti and God had impacted their lives this past week. I was immediately brought back to my first week in Haiti and the impact it had on my own life. I was so grateful to be reminded and witness the ways in which both Haiti and God work in people’s lives. A common theme throughout the meeting was a worry about what their lives would look like when they went home. After all, it’s easier to give yourself to God for a week rather than your entire life. I kept thinking of the Creole phrase “piti piti na rive”  {litte by little we will arive} because living your life for God isn’t easy, but it sure is rewarding. Never give up. Never lose hope.  Never lose sight. Glwa pou Bondye.

Jake Stebbing

Click here to partner with me on this incredible journey.





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