It’s a real crunch time in the world right now. In the aftermath of the disaster in Haiti, my mind is left swirling with news reports, horrific images, insensitive commentary and political backlash. My imagination is racing with what-ifs and what-would-I-dos. But if I am honest, at the end of the day, my life isn’t changed. I am not changed.
I’ve been thinking of this for several days now and have run it over and over in my mind. I feel guilt as I sit safely in my home feeling cranky because Oscar woke up 3 times last night. I feel greedy when I look at our wonderful new van and then later think, we can’t “afford” to help as much as we should. I feel selfish when I stop short of putting myself “in their shoes” because it hurts too much to think of Oscar experiencing that kind of suffering. I feel human.
I haven’t been able to so much as tweet about the crisis because I am numb to it all and I feel like a phoney. And that is a startling reality. When did I become so cold? Why am I reacting this way? Perhaps I am just dealing with the tragedy internally, or maybe I am refusing to deal with it. But the fact is, those thousands of people in Haiti simply do not get the luxury of “not dealing with it”. And then I saw this quote on Twitter:
Wouldn’t it be amazing if we were always this panicked to help others?
And that’s what it is. I am a broken person. My heart is not where it needs to be. Before or after this tragedy. I am not panicked to help on this or any other Sunday and that needs to change.
Look, I applaud the efforts of those who have been led to help. We all need to do what we can and I don’t want this to sound like I don’t think we need to help the situation in Haiti. All I am saying is that all of this. All this death and destruction on a massive scale on our doorstep is happening, has happened and will continue to happen to millions of people the world over. One day it might be 9/11. Another Katrina, or a Tsunami, an Earthquake. Or a Stroke, Cancer, MS, Drunk Driver, Divorce.
How can I run the race as a follower of Jesus to be all that He is to the people in need around me every single day? I fall so SO very short and this fact often causes me to recoil into the safety of my life and family. This is not the example Jesus set for me when He said, “…Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation…” But how do you preach the good news to a world full of hurting and dying people?
And I think it’s not as much about preaching the good news, as it is BEING the good news. I am not at this place, but I need to be. I long to have the kind of heart that serves and seeks to change the world. To be the good news. To BE Jesus to those in need, after a tragedy and in every day life. To be there when the media dies down and the hype is replaced by another fresh story. To be there for the Hatians, the Indonesians, those still hurting in New Orleans, my neighbors, my family. To truly follow Jesus. Every day.