At 72 years of age, Peresse had lived ten years longer than the average life expectancy in Haiti. I think sometimes we need additional time to fully understand and accept the grace and forgiveness that God offers to each of us. Thankfully God allowed Peresse that extra time.
Peresse came into the World Wide Village mobile medical clinic in Luly because of large scars across his chest and back that had been caused by a painful bout of shingles. The scars were itchy and bothersome and he was hoping for some relief. What Peresse left with was much more than just medicine for his scars.
Like all the patients seen in our World Wide Village mobile medical clinic, Peresse was treated both medically and spiritually. After the physicians treated Peresse, our discipleship team lovingly asked questions to better understand Peresse and his heart. He knew of Jesus and the church but wasn’t walking with the Lord. He also believed that he was not going to heaven when he died. The discipleship team spent time walking Peresse through the gospel and asking what was keeping him from the Lord.
Pictured: Mobile Medical Clinic in Luly
Our discipleship team member, Nick Keith, recalls the conversation. “I asked Peresse why he hadn’t committed his life to Christ and he just kept saying he didn’t know or wasn’t ready. We walked him through the Gospel and explained that Jesus loves us so much and the sacrifices he has made so that we can go to heaven and have salvation. After going through all that and asking him if he wanted to commit his life to Christ, he was still a little hesitant.”
“Then Patrick (WWV staff) and I got real with him. We told Peresse that we are not guaranteed tomorrow, especially as we grow older. That anyone of us could not wake up in the morning. And if we want to inherit the Kingdom of Heaven one day, we need to commit our lives to the Lord now. We told him how much more peace and joy he could have the remainder of his days if he would put his trust in Jesus. So we asked him one final time. What are you waiting for? He replied that he wanted to commit his life to Jesus. After leading him through a prayer of salvation we encouraged him to go to a World Wide Village men’s conference at a local church and gave him a copy of the New Testament and Psalms. I happened to see him the next day when visiting the school in Luly. He was standing outside the fence. When I turned and saw him, his face lit up and he smiled and waved.”
Pictured: Nick, Peresse, Jonathan & Patrick
Peresse did attend the men’s conference the next day and we’re hopeful that he’ll stay grafted into discipleship by the local church in Haiti. Pray that even at age 72, Peresse would grow in his relationship with the Lord. It’s never too late to trust in Christ and we are honored that God chose individuals from World Wide Village to share the good news of the gospel with Peresse. Thanks to you, there are more and more opportunities to see the kingdom of God growing in Haiti! Your faithfulness is changing lives – for eternity!
Pictured: Men’s conference in Williamson