Here’s the heart-wrenching dilemma of Haiti: there are so many urgent needs, where do you start. I’ve never talked to so many hungry desperate people any place I’ve been.
We spent today visiting and sharing with a twin pair of tent cities, Marissa 14 & 17. Don’t ask about the numbers I don’t know. Walking through the first one, it was a little bit encouraging to Marko and Seth seeing the progress they have made. They have been given some nice newish tents. But as we met with the leaders of the community it was obvious that they were hungry. Children fell asleep in our arms at 10:00 a.m. because they were tired because they had not eaten for a while. We talked at length about ideas to fundamentally change their reality (micro loans, entrepreneurship yada yada). But hungry people need to eat. Although shelter is better because of the earthquake, groups arriving with food are less frequent.
Then we went through the second of the two tent villages. They have about 2500 and 1500 respectively. Their situation was unlivable. They are on hard rocky ground, with now floors of any kind. As if to put a highlight on the situation, it was POURING the rain down. It was like being in the shower with cloths on. But we found people welcoming us warmly, children with much light in their eyes. One guy was walking around with a plastic bag on his head and over his back like a makeshift raincoat. He showed us his house and then offered his coat to Doug. Honestly, I had to turn away. Who was blessing whom?
David, in his post yesterday, talked about being struck with the inequity of it all. Even amongst the poorest of the poor one sees it. Want a verse that might keep you up at night?
2Cor. 8:14 at this present time your abundance being a supply for their need, so that their abundance also may become a supply for your need, that there may be equality…
While we were walking through the village, just saying “hi” (mewn kontan moue – nice to meet you) one young guy came up to us thanking us for being there. He said that when visitors come it reminds him that they are not forgotten by God.
As we crawled back across Pour au Prince through the worse traffic I’ve even seen, we stopped at a grocery store. It was about 2:30 and we had not eaten yet today (administrative snafu at breakfast and we gave our PBJ sandwiches to the people – tough to discern the will of God on that one ☺). We just bought what we wanted – well whatever they had, Vons has nothing to fret. Again, the contrast.
To be honest I’m still trying to make the connection and meet the people that I was hoping to meet. But in another ironic turn, I happen to be reading in the regular bible-reading plan I follow tow chapters today.
Mark 16 – Resurrection! “God, this land needs resurrection, new birth!
Gal 6. Check out this thought from Paul:
Gal. 6:9 Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary.
The camera’s are off, the world’s attention has largely shifted. The suffering has just begun. As followers of Jesus we must not be governed by the news cycle.
Gal. 6:10 So then, while we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, and especially to those who are of the household of the faith.
We have an opportunity. We need to figure out a way to take.