Greetings from Jamaica! We’re 75% of the way through the “mission” portion of our trip. Tomorrow will be our final workday for this trip. But, that’s saddening, so let’s focus on the events of today instead.
The morning started with a beautiful sunrise, and was followed by another tasty breakfast. After that, we kicked off the day with a brief worship celebration and a touching devotion from my wife, Melanie. From there we headed out to work on the R.A.I.S.E. project for the day.
You’ll noticed I referred to it as a “project,” rather than a “farm.” That’s because it is so much much more than “just a farm.” It’s an investment in a community that is in need of change of course. R.A.I.S.E. is a project that will be able to reach the entire community of Highgate, and extend into the parish of St. Mary. It is currently in a more agriculturally-based phase, which is a fundamental aspect of the project; however, a metaphorical snowball has started rolling, and momentum is building.
Work has started on the next phase of this project, which is a community center. The community center portion of this project extends the project’s reach. It will be a place for education, medical attention, fellowship, and so much more. And in the next few months, after the red tape has been cleared, the project begins embarking on a wonderful journey.
Some of us had an opportunity to explore the vastness of this nearly 200 acre bush-covered blessing between tasks today. It might only look like a bunch of jungle with little survey flags spread about marking a future project, but you can see the promise of its future in the eyes of the man showing us around, Cleveland. He’s been studying here at R.A.I.S.E. for a few years, and has recently graduated into his own plot of land that he is developing for production of an enterprise that he gets to call his own.
The overarching task we’ve been assisting with this week is an irrigation system. This system is part of the growing infrastructure at R.A.I.S.E. that will provide future students/participants of R.A.I.S.E. with the investment that offers a hand up, rather than a hand out. An investment that will help this impoverished community grow and better sustain itself rather than rely on others for sustenance.
Good night from the mission field.Thank you for your continued prayer and support. We look forward to tell more stories from our experiences here in the mission field when we return home this weekend.
In His Service,