However, I must say that such an approach is not complete. Haiti can only survive if a solid investment is made in its foundation. Because of my involvement with the North Haiti Music Camp and Universite Chrestinne du Nord d'Haiti (Northern Haiti Christian University), I must tell you that what God has placed on my heart is a strong desire to see transformation in Haiti. Transformation happens with the formation of future leaders and workers based on the truth of divine information. The crumbling of what was in Haiti offers hope for a new dawn but that can only happen through Christ-centered education which will provide the right foundation for the rebuilding process.

Hosea 4:6 declares that "My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge," and I have witnessed the truth of that verse in Haiti. The people of Haiti are desperately in need of God and, in His providence, God left us His Word to guide us there. Psalm 119:9-16 talks about the necessity to know God's Word, to meditate on it, to memorize it and to apply its truth in our daily walk. Once we know God's Word, it becomes a real part of us guiding our thought process, values and behavior. It is the gateway to a life of purity as we will seek to please and love God by obeying His commands.

Furthermore, the people of Haiti need practical knowledge in order for sound teaching to bear fruit. We need people, Haitians or otherwise, who will commit to train blue collar and white collar workers for a long time. We need volunteers who will teach musicians, pastors, doctors, accountants, and architects. We are desperate for people who will demonstrate the importance of good gardeners, custodians, plumbers, as well as politicians and government officials. Such change does not happen overnight; it takes love, courage, will and perseverance.

I stand before you now because godly men and women invested time, money and energy in feeding me God's Word and training me in other areas according to biblical principles. While the provision of food and blood is really important now, we want to be sure that we will contribute to the propagation of the life-giving message of the Gospel. That is why we are partnering with Haiti Hope Fund to help fund Christian education programs, seminaries, schools and scholarships for those who have been severely hit by the earthquake. When current relief agents are long gone, we want to be sure that there will be Christ-followers digging deeply to secure the firm foundation of Jesus in a dark land like Haiti. Won't you join me in contributing toward that end? As we pray, give, love and share the needs of Haiti, we, too, will be restored.

I still cry, but I know deep in my heart that I have been blessed beyond measure since this period of suffering will produce a much stronger character in me and in you if we choose to believe. I will pray that God will restore all of us both physically and spiritually for His glory. And I will pray that the divine restoration of my beloved Haiti will cause it to regain its former title, "the pearl of the Caribbean Islands." 

Dr. Louima LiliteOklahoma Baptist University assistant professor of music, was born and raised in Haiti. He serves as the coordinator of the annual North Haiti Music Camp in Limbé, Haiti. Lilite and his family -- wife Dephanie and daughters Abigail and Estelle -- were in north Haiti during the devastating earthquake on Jan. 12, 2010. Although they were not injured, it was several days before Lilite learned of the safety of his sister and her family in Port-au-Prince. 
Dr. Lilite shared this message at University Baptist Church in Shawnee, where he serves as minister of music, during the morning worship service on Jan. 17. Used by permission of the author.

Photo courtesy Samaritan's Purse.

Original publication date: January 22, 2010