“If You Will Hold the Rope”

245931835_640In 2010, just before the earthquake happened, I was sitting in the Port-au-Prince airport, waiting on a flight that was running late. As so often happens in Haiti, I struck up a conversation with a couple of airport workers who, once they discovered I was in seminary, started me asking questions about the Bible. Before long, a small crowd had gathered. I remember looking around and hearing what I believe was probably the voice of the Lord, saying, “They are so hungry and have so little (spiritual) bread.” (To read the whole story, click here.) Haiti is full of churches and religion, but it has very few trained leaders in local churches.

In 2013, I moved back to Haiti with a desire to be part of the solution. I wanted to help disciple young leaders for the local church. For the last four years, I have been teaching at the Bible college my Dad founded. I have had the opportunity to teach some exceptional students, but I have also seen how great the need is for theological and spiritual formation among local-church leaders there. (Once, one of my students raised his hand after I had taught for about half an hour on the Gospel of John, mentioning the Trinity several times, and nervously asked the question, “What is the Trinity?”) The task of teaching in a foreign language has been difficult but interactions like that have helped to convince me that I am doing valuable work.

Doing that work requires money. (I often wish it didn’t, but it does.) For my work at the Bible college, I receive the equivalent of about $50 per month. Last year, I also began working as a history teacher in an English-language high school for which I receive $350 per month. I also have a translation business on the side, but my income is mostly supplemented by partners like you who contribute to keep me financially afloat. When I was first considering moving back to Haiti five years ago, I told the Lord that he would have to help me raise whatever I needed because I am naturally shy and not very talented at self-promotion. The Lord came through and he has done so every year. I have never had to worry about money since moving back.

However, I am at a point in my life where I need to start building a larger base of support. Haiti is the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere but paradoxically, it is also an expensive place to live. I am looking for at least 10 regular partners who would sign up to give on a monthly basis. Here is what I spend my money on:

  • Rent/food — My parents have never asked me for anything, but I give them $300 per month because they are allowing me to live in their house, eat their food, and drive their car. They lost a renter this year (they were renting out their guesthouse) and I would like to be able to move in and pay them the $500 per month they lost.
  • Student loan repayment – about $300 per month
  • Car insurance/vehicle fees – about $40 per month right now; will probably go up soon
  • Gas for the car – runs about $100 per month (diesel is about $3.20 a gallon in Haiti right now)
  • Travel – I travel back to the U.S. once a year. Roundtrip airfare to NC is running about $700 once a year or broken down over 12 months, about $60 per month.
  • I would also like to be able to have medical/dental insurance for myself.

I would like to raise at least $1,000 per month in support to complete the translation and teaching incomes. I currently raise about $130. With your help, I will be able to continue sowing my life into theological training for young Haitian leaders.

In Philippians 1:5, the Apostle Paul wrote to the Christians at Philippi that they had been his “partners in the gospel from the first day until now.” Similarly, William Carey, before setting out as the first missionary to India, famously told a small band of brothers in England that “I will go down if you will hold the rope.” Some are called to go; others are called to give. All have a part to play in Kingdom work. Would you be my partner in the Gospel? Would you hold the rope?

To give:

  • Visit www.thelordstable.org, click “Give Now” under the Giving menu, and set up a recurring donation for the amount you choose.
  • Specify “Missions” under Fund and type “Monthly Support – John Adams, Haiti” in the Memo line.
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