Thursday, November 17, 2011

Clinic Day 4 and Some Reflections on Yesterday

I mentioned that there were a lot of tears yesterday. Did something out-of-the ordinary happen yesterday? No, just Haiti. The problems of Haiti are so deep and complex that inevitably we quickly reach the end of ourselves and realize that there are many things we cannot fix. For example, how does a doc prescribe medication for a person when the more foundational question is that many have very little to eat? For someone in the noble profession that seeks to address pain and sickness, what happens when the final consult is that "there is nothing I can do for you"? For the noble-hearted, the grief of watching suffering, so badly wanting to relieve it but then being unable to do so can be unbearable....

But, we don't lose heart. Last night we did a group devotional out of 2Cor 4 and in that passage the Apostle Paul says that we always carry in our bodies the death of Christ so that His life might be revealed in us (2Cor. 4:10). The point was that often in America we seek to insulate ourselves from pain and suffering, pushing it out of our lives. Yet it still finds us and for those who have the eyes to see, it actually proves to be present everywhere (even in Lincoln, NE). And many things are not fixable. What the passage says is that the death of Christ will always be in us, the "burden" of suffering in other words. Why? " that grace that is reaching more and more people may cause thanksgiving to overflow to the glory of God." Christ is coming to make all things new (Rev. 21:5) but in the meantime we wait with patience for the fulfillment of that promise. We suffer and we grieve and we step into those places where much heartache exists, knowing that much is not to be fixed, but to be "carried in our bodies,"... and shared.

Why the many tears yesterday? Haiti. Haiti makes you grieve, not without hope, but with genuine heartache and sorrow, "for we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus' sake, so that his life may be revealed in our mortal body" (2Cor. 4:11).

Today we go to the Dufailly orphanage. The space will be tight and we may have difficulty finding an adequate space to "relieve ourselves" when needed. Being in the Caribbean heat, I find myself needing to drink a ton to stay hydrated; also, I don't go to the restroom as often because of the way the heat makes it so that I absorb rather than pass fluids. So you're often calculating the balance between taking in enough liquid and wondering if you will have a place to "go" (especially the women). No one has gotten dehydrated so far: praise God. We're always reminding people to "drink." But it's uncomfortable seeking to work well when you have to use the bathroom but are unsure if you will be able to find a place to do so. Sorry if this is a bit raw for you but we're in Haiti and it is what it is. There's a prayer request in there somewhere but I'll let you work out the wording of that prayer before the Lord. Pray for us today. Thank you.

Thank you for your all your prayers so far friends. God is good. All the time, God is good.

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