In the great depression, Hobos would mark houses that were good for a handout. Then they would know which ones to return to to get another meal on their next trek through town. I think our house has been marked, but for another purpose. First they stole our Nativity. Then the Mormons came by. Then today a man came by wanting to know if I thought God was punishing Haiti.
Now he was really very nice and we had a really nice conversation and in case you are wondering, No, I don’t think God is punishing Haiti. I think earthquakes just happen. Just like tornadoes, hurricanes, snowstorms, thunderstorms and avalanches happen.
But that is how I spent my morning, talking to this very nice man about religious concerns he was having. I think he wanted to reassure himself that the whole world hadn’t gone mad. LOL We discuss what we were seeing on the TV and I shared with him some of the praise reports coming out of an orphanage my nephew’s church runs there. Small things like the building is still standing and slowly food is trickling in. Not great big things, but little praise God reports that keep you running when the images on the screen become way too overwhelming. Like most people watching the TV, the images from Haiti are just too overwhelming. We want to help, but where do you even begin? Prayer was my first start. Prayer for the people already on the ground. For God to give them strength until relief help came. Prayer for the relief workers and their safety to get there. Prayer for the relief workers relief.
As we talked this gentleman and I, we were able to put aside our differences-race, age, sex and concentrate on our sameness-Christianity, concern for Haiti, and we both agreed that this would be a long road ahead. There will be heroes and villains in this story. We each get to decide which we are going to be. For the effort to really work, everyone involved is going to have to do what we did this morning on my porch. Put aside the differences. And concentrate on the sameness. Lives of innocent people depend on us.
Yes, my house has been marked. Not sure why, but when he left, he left with a spring in his step. He was reassured that there were others out there praying for Haiti. He wasn’t alone. There were others who were going to give, cry, pray, care.
You see, once upon a time, I was a little girl. I sat under a destroyed house wondering if God had forsaken me. My family and I lost everything we owned that day. And all God’s people surrounded us, they fed us, they clothed us, they made sure we had safe housing. They prayed for us and they cared for us. I know exactly how those little children feel. Tornadoes happen. Earthquakes happen. Love happens…