Friday, January 15, 2010

God, Have Mercy

Posted by Leona Bergstrom

All of the topics I was planning to write about this week seem way too trivial in the midst of our universal grieving over the devastating events in Haiti.

Like many others around the world, I’ve been glued to the news stations as they show horrifying clips of the destruction and death, and thankfully, now, rescue. I’m pouring over the blogs of missionaries and others in Haiti who are watching their surroundings disintegrate and their ministry opportunities escalate.

The stories and pictures grip my heart. I feel strangely connected through a 52” TV screen, but I don’t hear the prolonged screams of desperate moms or smell the repugnant stench of death.  When I can stand no more of the news coverage, or can bear no longer the obnoxious ads that separate them, I simply push “mute.”

But we can’t really mute the stories that echo in our souls. Today I heard of a man standing out in the road, his destroyed home behind him, all of his family was dead. He stood there staring blankly, holding a can of peas. It was all he had left. A can of peas. It might mean life for him for a few days. It might make him a target for a desperate thief.

But the sound that rocked my spirit the most was the one of a baby crying in fear and probably pain. He was about the size of my grandson. One moment he was the apple of his grandma’s eye, and now he was alone with a stranger trying to comfort him.

Cries of fear, uncertainty, pain, and grief arise from the hearts of Haiti, and they echo around the world. We feel helpless. We send money. We reflect.

But mostly, we simply implore, “God, have mercy.”

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