So hard to believe I took this photo almost 7 years ago of the Presidential Palace in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, and today it looks like this:
I'm not even completely sure what to pray today after seeing these pictures, but if it's not very real to you, these pictures will make it that way. I just keep thinking about how shameful it is for us as Americans, as Christians, as humans to overlook great need until a time of devastation or tragedy hits. And then when it does, we focus our attention on it again and become people of prayer once more. When the shock value wears off, we go back to our normal lives and forget again...until another tragedy strikes.
Columbine was this way.
the VA Tech shooting.
personal loss or the loss of someone else's loved one...
We forget how much sorrow lives on unless we're closely connected to it.
In a mass email from Keren Dongo, the Community Engagement Manager for the ONE.org campaign, I was struck with the reality of these words:
Haiti’s long struggle against poverty is now exacerbated, its needs now magnified, and the vulnerability of the Haitian people more greatly exposed.This is what is most heartbreaking of all. Haiti is a country whose needs were more desperate than we could ever imagine, and now they are magnified. The people's vulnerability is exposed by the news stories, cameras flashing, and Americans who thrive on the story itself. Those who were already hurting and in great need are at a point of desperation.
I'm thankful we serve a God who offers forgiveness. I've been so convicted today that my heart has become hardened to the needs of the world until tragedy strikes. Awareness really is the first step, but there must be steps taken beyond that. Join me, if you will, in pleading for forgiveness for our selfish, forgetful hearts, and in praying that the Lord's sovereignty be made known around the world because of this tragedy.
He is sovereign.
He will heal.
He offers hope.
And He can use us to be vessels of that hope.
Will you carry it?
If you're looking for a tangible way to help, there are a million ways to do so. But here are a few organizations that you can check out for starters:
Haitian Christian Outreach (this is the organization through which I went to Port-au-Prince in 2002)
Haitian Christian Mission
Northwest Haiti Christian Mission
Help Heal Haiti