Yesterday I woke up early (well early for a Saturday) and sat down at the computer for a Skype call that I had scheduled with my friends church in Chicago. His church is heading to Haiti on Saturday, 5 days from now, to serve the people affected and devastated from the January 12 earthquake and the recent outbreak of Cholera. If your like me your thinking the same thing right now, “is Haiti still in a bad spot? I haven’t heard about the problems in Haiti for quite some time now, it must be better right?” Well, the answer to that is a giant NO. Here is what the fine country of Haiti looks like right now as described by Nicholas Kristof from the New York Times.
Nobody goes in or out without being thoroughly disinfected; to try to control the epidemic, bodies are buried rather than released to families. In one tent, 40 seriously ill patients were lying next to each other on cholera beds — boards with holes in the middle and waste buckets underneath to catch the constant diarrhea. Staff members put a sheet over Tiphay Merilus, 66, just as I arrived. Patients a few feet away in other beds averted their eyes as a sanitation crew carried out Mr. Merilus’s corpse and disinfected his cot. Already, more than 1,700 people have died of cholera in less than a month, and the Pan American Health Organization estimates that 400,000 Haitians may get cholera over the next year. Source.
I preached a message today at my home Church on giving. The three main reasons that we give in my opinion are
1. We are a generous people. It is in our nature as image bearers of Jesus to give and to love.
2. We give out of guilt. We feel that we need to make up for something bad that we have done in the past, or yesterday and so we give to make ourselves feel better, or to somehow redeem the bad thing that we did by giving or doing something for others.
3. We give because there is a need. This is great, but what happens when the need isn’t right in front of our faces? What happens when the news moves on from a need like Haiti and on to the next big thing, like the divorce of a celebrity or the spotting of a UFO over Tepica, Kansas? This seems to be the case with most of us, we forget about the need when our lives move on, or when it is inconvenient or unsexy to stay engaged with it. In short, we suck and need to be redeemed and constantly reminded.
My challenge to me and to you is that we would continually be doing justice. The call to do justice is not conditional on if injustice is right in front of our faces, it is a call demanding immediate and constant obedience because injustice is constant in our world.
Now I am going to go eat perogies with my family and tuck my kids into bed. Thanks for stopping by and listing to my thoughts.