Storyteller. Grace Dweller.

I’m Jennifer — wife of an Iowa farmer, mom to two girls, new book author. I believe in you, because I believe in Jesus. You matter to Him, and you matter to me. more »

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Friday 29th November 2013

A Black Friday Miracle: #HomeForTheHolidays

Haiti, Black Friday 2013 –

In some checkout of some WalMart somewhere in North America, shoppers were slamming against each other – elbow to jagged elbow – fighting for the best deal.

Somewhere, it happened–

People who were thankful for the blessings over turkey on Thursday, were scouring shelves on Black Friday wanting more. They were looking for something they thought they couldn’t live without, “while supplies last.”

But you, friend? Yes you, somewhere across the ocean, somewhere on the other side of this screen. You were with us right here in Haiti, poorest country in the western hemisphere – where people aren’t scouring shelves for deals, but for meals.  This is a place where the phrase – “while supplies last” – means this: I hope I can feed by babies before supplies will run out.

You are with us. Right. Here.

How do I know? I know it because I felt all of you.

I felt you here, when I wrapped my arms around Adeline on Friday and gave her the news. The news about how all of you made the miracle happen.




I tried to wrap the hugs of a thousand women, or more, into one tight embrace. I felt it in the depth of me — how Christ is still in the business of turning the darkest, blackest Fridays into Good Fridays.

Less than two weeks ago, we jumped in together. We decided to help our friend, Adeline, in Haiti. She’s a hard-working ViBella Jewelry artist whose house is “melting.” That’s the word she uses to describe what’s happening to her house.

Her one-room house is eroding when it rains, because her house is made of mud, cardboard and a shoddy tin roof. I saw it today, and … yeah. No words for the place.

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You wanted to help, by buying the jewelry that Adeline and her Haitian friends create every day in Haiti.

We needed to raise $5,000, and we called it #HomefortheHolidays.

Today, I sat knee to knee with Adeline and an interpreter at the ViBella workshop.

DSC_0996 DSC_0994


I told Adeline how brave she was.

And how beautiful.

And how Jesus had stirred in the hearts of so many beautiful American women – ordinary women who were mothers, and grandmothers, and teachers, and dentists, and preachers, and daycare providers, and real-estate agents. How they were women who diapered babies and sat in carpool lanes and had Bibles tucked under their arms on their way through the glass doors of churches in America on Sunday mornings.

I held her hands. She pushed that one strand of hair behind my ear.



I told her more about you — how you were women who loved a good bargain on Black Friday, but who would never, ever, EVER, forget what it meant to live in the promise of Good Friday. And that’s why the miracle happened:

That’s why you sisters bought her a new house. WE BOUGHT ADELINE A HOUSE! And then some!! We exceeded our $5,000 goal!!!

Maybe we can buy her some curtains for the windows. And a pretty rug for the front door. And maybe we’ll bring her of those crazy macramé owls and dare her to hang it on the wall. Because that’s what friends do.

And we do it because our hearts beat like this:

Jesus. … Jesus … Jesus.

And sitting here in a starry sky in Haiti, I’m just sure of it: Adeline can hear your heart beat strong. Beating strong. So strong. For Jesus.

DSC_1009 adelineme
  • Jenny Lee Sulpizio

    Ah-mazing! The body of Christ is amazing!! Great job, faithful servant. It’s beautiful to see Him at work. Glory to God. Hugs!

  • 1lori_1

    Oh, yes, yes, yes. That is what I waited for today. Praise Jesus! Thank you Jennifer for being who you are and taking our love over there to Adeline!

  • Tears… Oh friend. Thank you for showing us how to love and for using your blog for Jesus. Nothing about it points to you but all to Jesus. I am blessed to call you friend.

  • Tell her, “That’s just what sister in Christ do…”

  • Ah, this. THIS. You lept out in faith, for this beautiful sister, and God! My heart is singing with yours tonight! He is faithful. You inspire me with your obedience and faith. God be praised. This is His grace. Love you!!

  • Lisha Epperson

    You helped make the seemingly impossible -POSSIBLE! All with and.because of Christ. Bless you as you do this holy work on earth, as it IS in heaven.

  • For God’s glory shines Hope, radiating across the heavens, into precious, purpose filled lives.

    All honour and glory to His Holy name, where nothing is impossibe.

  • Jenn Hand

    glory.. this was beautiful.. so beautiful.. have such a heart for haiti having been their four times.. thank you for this glory story

  • Jody Ohlsen Collins

    oh, Jennifer, the tears are welling up. Our God is so amazing!

  • Jennifer, you have done more here than raise money and provide a house, you have shown us all what true generosity and thankfulness looks like incarnate. This makes my heart swell. thank you.

  • Monica Sharman

    Ahhh. *Wow*

  • Heartwarming? If this wasn’t a heartwarming story, get your pulse checked soon. Thanking God for you and the work He is doing through you.

  • Oh my, tears burned my eyes when I read this! How big and awesome is our God!!!! And what a blessing you are Jennifer! Thank you for starting this…for all of us, especially Adeline.

    Btw, in the first picture of you sitting with Adeline (3rd pic from the top), it looks like you are sitting next to the North star. It makes the picture even more amazing!

  • Lelia Chealey

    so beautiful Jennifer. This made me cry. Love you both.

  • Alison Hector

    I’m here clapping and grinning. Yes and amen! This is not just Black Friday, but a Great Friday! Glory to God, and thanks to you, Jennifer.

  • pastordt

    Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful.

  • HisFireFly

    smiling, crying, thanking Him, always Him, who moves the hearts of those He created to do His bidding. what a moment of rejoicing you share here.

  • Cheering and touched and moved… By your vision and boldness and by the giving of hearts to meet this need. With love to you and Adeline!

  • Now I wish I could be there to help build the house. Thanks for giving us a way to be involved, Jennifer.

  • I’m sitting here with tears streaming down my face. I am so glad you reached out to us and allowed us to help with this Thanksgiving gift for Adeline. Thank you for the update and the pictures. God bless you and God bless Adeline.

  • Rebecca Presnell

    I am awed and amazed by this! We exceeded the goal!!! I knew we would! I had faith in all of us, and faoth in our most Awesome God that He would find a way to make this happen! Oh I’m crying happy tears! Thank you so much, Jennifer, for allowing us to be a part of this miracle. Thank you for taking us to Haiti with your words and pictures. Thank you for bringing Adeline’s beautiful spirit to life through this story. I’m forever changed by this. Truly. Still…just, my heart.

  • Deb Anderson Weaver

    Wow! Wonderful!!! Rejoicing!!!

    Deb Weaver

  • Mel Van Der Vliet

    THIS — this is what “Love does”……….. Thanks for sharing, the waterworks began at the words “I told Adeline how brave she was – And how beautiful”.

  • Bonnie Stafford

    I will think of Adeline every time I wear my Bold Love necklace and bracelet. We did it! So glad you were able to deliver the good news.

  • Annetta Van Andel

    Yeah God!!
    Vibella jewelry is now in Washington state. It is exciting to share in this great news.
    What a joy to share in knowing how great our God is as He opens hearts.
    Joy to Adeline

  • Judy

    I just picked up the mail, and there was my box from Vibella! Then I come home and find THIS!
    Thank you for giving us the chance to be a part of something that transcends the craziness of the season. What an absolutely perfect way to start the Advent season. Doing the Snoopy Happy dance…..traveling mercies as you head back home.

  • Beautiful, just beautiful – all of it!

  • Carol J. Garvin

    Rejoicing with you and sending love to Adeline. 🙂

  • This is such a beautiful thing.

  • Big happy Snoopy spin!

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