Behold another day slips beneath with a fading horizon. I sit here grateful tonight for all the mercies of my life. Today's activities inserted me into a bit of the Haitian underworld I have never experienced. Sometimes you only think you have walked a mile in someone else's shoes, today I actually did. I went shopping with a real Haitian woman in her shopping world, and got my socks blown off. It was surreal, and real, and unbelievable. Our American ladies have so much to be thankful for when they head off to the shopping marketplace. Some things I never want to forget, somethings I would rather never remember. Sights and sounds and smells ripped through my senses, and left me a little senseless! So many stark contrasts again today. It's like I get to see it all over again from yet another diverse angle. How many times and ways can a culture be observed, and to what end. That I further exclaim my thanks to God for my place in life? Or that I come to another deeper understanding of contentment regarding my place in life? Too many questions, not enough answers.
The stunning reality is the capacity for endurance by the human heart. And not just to survive, but to somehow rise above the circumstances and smile, sing, and taunt the savagery of a land! To bury its cruel head in the muck and mire of its own cunning brutality, and instead share hope and joy with each other. I watched in this deep underworld as Robinson lowered his glasses and said I am going to play a prank on a woman from the church. She obviously didn't expect to see him in this unique woman's world, I watched with curiosity as he approached her little stand and bent over to inquire about a product she was marketing, and the crazy surprise that lit her face when he lifted his head, while raising his glasses and she recognized him. I captured that moment in my minds eyes. The delight and joy that exuded from this private place that left me feeling out of place. Like this was a cultures right to privacy and I an inadequate stranger allowed in by a unique turn of events of which I was really unworthy. I am beholden to a goodness I don't fully understand. The depravity of the circumstance would deny the exchange I witnessed by my own code of sanitation.
Today also brought light upon the mechanical failure in the Toyota. A blown head gasket between four cylinders is the culprit. As of tonight the engine is totally taken apart, all the parts have been cleaned for reinstallation, and the head will go to Port on Monday to be machined, the valves will be checked and repaired, and Wednesday or Thursday should see our needed vehicle road worthy again. Stronger and better than before. I am so grateful for all the little but massively important things God has brought together for this trip. I feel at great peace tonight. I am getting better and better at this drill. You might have expected I would be a pro at this point in this labor of faith and love, but God keeps dropping me behind enemy lines with just a little less ammunition than I would hope for! All you mighty giants of faith may not be able to relate, but my testing is my own I guess, I'm just being candid and truthful.
I ran across another American in a store tonight, he has been living here for two years. He and his wife just had a baby here three months ago, and the water situation has affected them with great difficulty. They are borrowing water from a hand dug well, and bucket with a one gallon pail every drop of water. They are using cloth diapers for their new born, and he says it feels like all he does is carry water. When he found out I was a Water Well driller he asked if I had ever seen any hand pumps and where he might find one down here. He couldn't find any. We have two or three stored at the church! I am going to get him one Monday and change their lives! It's just simply amazing how God works. I told him how amazing in the middle of a different universe that our paths would cross, another God moment in my day. The day was packed with them, take a leap of faith and be prepared to land a world away, for when God is in your jump, there is no telling how far you will go, how far He will take you. His day-timing crossed our paths at just the right moment for us to meet. Who said I ran behind or ahead today, running on God's clock, I was right on time! Matter of fact, when I come to Haiti, I stop looking at my watch, it just discourages me in my driving need to meet deadlines. Haiti has no deadlines. You may end up dead in a line, but to try to push your way through will kill you with stress.
I watched as a crowd waited outside the church for water, patiently they stood there, quietly hopeful that their buckets would find water for their meager existence. I passed a truck being filled with water for distribution this afternoon and children, maybe 6-8 of them were under the belly of the truck capturing the drips of the leaking tank! This bombardment of my mind and understanding is at times almost more than I can bear. How vile my ways and demands when these little ones wait for the crumbs from under the table, mere drips, but not one drip wasted. Think twice about those helpings of food or drink you toss away in your affluence tonight, some child in a land not to far removed from your own suffers for but a crumb from under our tables. And we grumble and complain for what?
I guess enough said for tonight. I am grateful to be able to see myself in the true light sometimes, this has been a good trip for calloused eyes, you don't realize your building them until they get torn and the tender skin below is exposed, perhaps the callouses serve us well for a season, my hands have been grateful on more than one occasion for the added protection, but it often leave one desensitized on another level where tenderness better serves the needs. So away with the callouses, I accept the pain of their removal with generosity, for I want to feel along with these people, that I may better help in the ways I'm meant to help as God commissions me on this journey. Blessings always my reading friends!