Sunday, March 07, 2010

Sunday in Ayiti & Waco

Today Troy helped lead worship at Church Under the Bridge (a very big gift to him right now and an awesome privilege) and took Noah to a Baylor Baseball game. I spoke to him briefly but was struggling to drive and talk and then Troy (formerly had a warrant-out-for-his-arrest-in-Texas-guy) had a cop coming up behind him and was in the same situation -so that brought our conversation to a quick end.

I got up at an ungodly hour to run this morning and then went up the hill to church. I missed my family all more today going to Port au Prince Fellowship without them. It was good to go and pray and cry and sing and hug some friends. The weather is VERY odd right now. We were cold at church. Those who have attended PAPF know that usually it is disgustingly hot and sticky and you leave with your neighbors B.O. rubbed all over you. It has been chillier than I can ever recall it being except maybe in January a time or two. It is too cold for people in tents without blankets.

After an awesome power-nap, late this afternoon Jen and I got out for a bit together and went to see some areas of town that we used to go to often. I think the Caribbean Market was the most shocking thing. Seeing photos is so different than seeing the real thing. We've been so busy down in Tabarre that we had not been up the hill to Petionville yet. So crazy and sad.

I am hoping to make the most of the last three days here. I am allowed to join the truck crew tomorrow as they go into the worst areas of town and do patient care on the streets in the slums. I have not taken up valuable space prior to this because there have always been so many really great medical people and it would have been silly for me to be on the truck. Tomorrow I will get to see some of what they've been doing these past seven weeks and act as a (crappier variety) translator. I am hoping to find Jean (remember him?) and bring him back in to the hospital. We want to use Tuesday as a test day with a prosthetic group near the Embassy and we want to bring Jean to them first. I am excited and hopeful that we'll find him tomorrow.

I am so thankful to be here - I am consciously living in this moment.

Love this song:

Also love this post Britt (our oldest daughter) wrote today:
Earlier this afternoon, I brought Isaac, Hope, Phoebe, & Lydia over to play at my house while Noah went to the baseball game with Daddy for his birthday date. We were playing Phase Ten at the table when we heard sirens. One of Waco's fire stations is only about 10 blocks from here, so I didn't really think much of it .... until we realized that the sirens were getting closer.

The sirens were coming from an ambulance and shortly after, a fire truck, & several squad cars. They parked in front of our house and ran into the neighbor's house (two-doors down). I was pretty surprised and like any curious human being, watched as they ran in & wondered what might be up. The kids witnessed it too & in hopes of making them less nervous & out of true concern, I said that we should pray over the situation. I prayed a prayer of protection and guidance for the emergency responders & police officers, and towards the end of my prayer I said something like "and Lord, if these people don't know you, I pray for some divine intercession that they might know you. Amen."

Isaac was quiet for a moment and then he said this:

"Why wouldn't they know Jesus - they're *your* neighbor."

Wow. Or maybe, Ouch? That really got me thinking.

I am a possibly overly-private person ... so maybe most people close to me wouldn't know this, but I do really struggle with feelings of purpose and why the here & now feels so meaningless at times. The fact is I loved what I was privileged to experience in Haiti during my last years before moving to college. Loved! Daily, I felt like I could touch someone just by chatting with them in their language or putting a band-aid on a school kids' scraped knee. I also loved the fulfillment I felt from being a big sister; we talked a lot about identity in our premarital counseling & that is something that came up frequently for me.

Now I am involved in academia and part-time work at very "American" places (I've worked most of the past two years in the restaurant industry - totally going against my grain) My experience at Baylor has been muddled with good and bad, like most people's college experiences. But the bad feels so much worse for me, because of the affluent culture that defines Baylor & the vast opposites I came to know living in Haiti. I know that my "here & now" is only temporary and a necessary process to become trained for how I believe God will use me through my future career in the medical field.

I've heard it once, I've heard it one-hundred times: "Bloom where He plants you." Or: "the mission field is as close as your backyard." I don't know what this looks like for me here in Waco and at Baylor as I finish up my degree from now until December. But I think I ought to start praying daily for that purpose to be revealed to me. Or for God to put me in places where I might bring him glory in the pursuit of the kingdom in Waco & Baylor.

The neighbor died. I had only met the wife once before, but an older man & woman live there with their teenage grandson. I don't know if he knew Jesus. But I do know that through the conviction of my sweet, wise 8yo brother that I will begin to ask God to help me show His love to my neighbors on Parrott Avenue.