Saturday, November 6, 2010
I have been fighting a cold this trip, well at least for a couple of days. Last night was a bit of a long one, our mattress is not holding air, and the night was very, very still. I felt rather that I was roasting like a pig on a stick, except I did not turn over and over! So when the dawn was crawling up on the horizon, I found myself awake. I dressed and headed to the top of the orphanage three stories in the air. Would anyone care for an ocean view? A big ship is heading away from the port against the gray early morning sky. A lone palm tree silhouettes itself against the greenish haze of the ocean water. I am a half of a mile from the ocean, yet this is not an ocean view I would ever want to claim. Littered flat rooftops, gray concrete in composition, chase along between the shoreline and me. Muddy, rough streets, a stench the rain did not wash away last night greets my plugged nose, and the knowledge that last nights rain flooded the river to the bottom of the bridge means that the trash of the last few weeks has just emptied itself into this ocean make me cringe inside. No, its not the ocean that beckons me back to this city, nor it’s sometimes spectacular views. It’s the desperate people that live here who shine the brightest for me. The view from the rooftop that is most cherished by me this morning are two boys sitting on a water tank. They sit on top of the tank facing each other, no doubt enjoying their perch, although not as high as mine. Another four boys draining a rooftop. They did this yesterday morning as well, their house sits below the roadway, so they have to force the water out a long pipe and over the concrete fence in front of their house to drain. Their yard around the home is filled with water; if the roof had emptied in this space it would have flooded the house. I would judge from the ankle deep water they are walking in we got about 3 inches of rain yesterday and into the evening. The city is waking up, the threat of the storm is over, they have been hunkered down for two days, and you can feel their energy. They play in the streets, dancing around the mud puddles. We would be calling the city road commission to come clean up their mess! Here there is no commission to call, so you just make the best out of the worst. Would to God I could learn some of these simple lessons from them. Every one of these trips sets my resolve a little deeper, to not take life events quite so seriously, to enjoy more what I have right in front of me, to cherish my relationships in life, and to share more of what I have with those who don’t’ have anything. So as I bring hope through Christ to them, they share deep lessons of life right back, their humility begs studious review. Granted they are not all this way, but the majority of these people are amazing, and would to God I could be as much as they are if I were placed in their circumstances. So it’s not the ocean view that brings me back, it’s the people, people for whom I pray for this morning, that fresh hope and courage rise with the dawn, that the coming days of their lives will be better. For the children in our new orphanage, this is surely the case, it may be a small dent in a very large problem, but it is change, God change. And I know that change can rock our world. So on to our next day we have been given to share here, may it be extraordinary and blessed, and may yours be as well! Blessings from a rooftop, Google earth can you see me now? I surely know God can!
Posted by Pastor at 12:34 PM