Everywhere you go – there are new faces. While some of the news in the states has moved on – those of us who are here cannot forget. I started watching the telethon for Haiti – and had to shut it off. Seeing the words HOPE FOR HAITI NOW on the screen – it was too much. These types of shows are for countries that I’ve never been to. Tragedy like this isn’t supposed to happen in my backyard. So I turn it off. Yet I cannot forget. Turning it off doesn’t take away the fact that I walk outside my home and there it is staring at me.
We don’t have the option of “turning it off” because it’s too emotional to deal with. No – Haiti is our home. We walk outside our home and there we are – faced with tragedy right before us. The town is full of people – faces we do not recognize. They come from all over – people looking for extended family to take them in. They come with nothing. How they even made it this far – it baffles us all. Stories of sorrow….people losing everyone around them – children who witnessed their parents being crushed – parents watching their children die….. those are the stories that now fill the homes in St. Louis du Nord.
Our workers come to the mission every day – each one with their own story. So many who still haven’t heard from their loved ones. Others wondering if they’ll ever know what has happened to their family. Mass graves cover Port-au-Prince now. I believe there will be over 100,000 people lost. Each person mattered to someone. They were the daughter, mother, son, father, sister, or brother of someone. There are no names. There are no records. There is no way for people to really know if their loved ones were buried in those graves. There’s no way to know if they’re still buried under rubble. So people just wonder – wonder what has happened to the people they love so much.
They search for peace but their hearts are left empty. Where is their family? What really happened? Will they one day be surprised and they’ll show up at their door? Will they hold out that “hope” for the rest of their lives? I talk with our workers here – they all say the same thing. There are so many faces – faces we don’t recognize. They must be refugees- but will they indeed find refuge in a village that already struggles to survive? If our workers cannot feed their families already – how will they feed all these new faces?
If it were not for my Jesus – I would not find the strength to walk outside my home. But I know that He is a place of refuge. As tears continue to stream down my cheeks – I find comfort in the scriptures. I find comfort in knowing where I can find refuge. What about the faces of those we don’t recognize? Who wipes away their tears? Do they know that God will hold them like they once held their children? We may not be in Port-au-Prince digging people out of the rubble but our job is life-saving just the same. These faces we don’t recognize – God knows every hair on their head. WE MUST TELL THEM. We have to tell them where they can find refuge. Please pray – that in all we do – we will be the face of Jesus to the thousands looking for a savior.
2 Samuel 22:3
my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation. He is my stronghold, my refuge and my savior— from violent men you save me.
2 Samuel 22:31
“As for God, his way is perfect; the word of the LORD is flawless. He is a shield for all who take refuge in him.
But let all who take refuge in you be glad; let them ever sing for joy. Spread your protection over them, that those who love your name may rejoice in you.
The LORD is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.
As for God, his way is perfect; the word of the LORD is flawless. He is a shield for all who take refuge in him.
How priceless is your unfailing love! Both high and low among men find refuge in the shadow of your wings.
God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.
Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge. Selah
Be my rock of refuge, to which I can always go; give the command to save me, for you are my rock and my fortress.
You have been a refuge for the poor, a refuge for the needy in his distress, a shelter from the storm and a shade from the heat.