I am now back in the States after a week-long adventure in Haiti. It was incredible; something I wish every person had the opportunity to see firsthand. The group was kept safe by the hand of God. The trip itself was at times trying: physically, emotionally, and spiritually.
I am not a fan of the heat, so going to one of the hottest places in the world during the summer wasn’t exactly a vacation for me. Our chauffer vehicle was a large, beaten utility truck. About a dozen or so of the team road in the back, holding on to the tattered frame as we covered dirt roads scarred by the earthquake. We walked through tent cities, hiked a mountain, and witnessed some of the most intense contrast in the world.
On one hand you have miles upon miles of unindustrialized creation. Rolling green hills falling down into the cool blue ocean; all set against a backdrop of majestic giants, lush with everything that can survive in that climate. But on the other, one sees miles upon miles of rubble. Remnants of a struggling civilization now set back more than most can imagine. Blue tents fill parks and sidewalks. Street businesses line the streets only inches in front of pancaked-concrete buildings. A country of beauty, a culture of poverty.
As we drove the city streets we were met with a mix of greetings. Some waved and smiled, we received many thumbs up. But not all were happy to see us. Some turned away in disgust, others flipped us off, and a few felt the need to voice their anger (a few times I was thankful to not understand Creole). My heart broke for so many of them. My mind whirled…overwhelmed by devastation. What can be done?
Doubt and hopelessness attempted to take root. I honestly questioned my Christianity at times during this trip. It’s one thing to understand the theology of suffering, quite another to pick the rubble off a dead neighbor and still say ‘God is good.’ But God was there. He taught and showed me so much.
I kept a journal over the trip; mostly observations and reflections. Over the next couple of weeks I hope to share these thoughts on this blog. I leave you with a verse I read early in the trip, and it came to define many of the things I saw.
“The earth is the LORD’s , and all it contains, the world, and those who dwell in it.” Psalm 24:1