The M, David, and Jono departed for Haiti this morning at 4:00 AM. They are working in support of a long-term rebuilding and transformation project that our church has undertaken in the town of Leogane, near the epicenter. Sometime this afternoon they arrived in Port-au-Prince and this evening, about 13 hours after they left town, I got the following text message:
"...We are here. I miss you. It was a hard hard entrance into the country. I am afraid about our first night. Please please pray for my peace. I am really upset, but holding it together..."
That's all I know.
What does she mean by "hard hard entrance into the country" you might ask? I'm not certain, but if I know my wife it means the poverty and destruction and hopelessness they have seen has been emotionally taxing. She is one of the deepest feeling people I have ever met, and seeing people suffering causes her real suffering too. That is probably the "hard hard entrance". Either that or they had to jump out of the plane without a parachute. Thump.
This incredible photograph was taken by a friend, Tiffany Bonow, in a recent trip to Haiti. What does it have to do with The M's text? Not much. But isn't it stunning? I mean come on Tiffany! It also serves as a break in the middle of the post. It needs a break.
You see, after I wrote the first half, I tried to call The M again - and this time I got through. My suspicions about her response to the devastation were correct, and even underestimated. She is truly overwhelmed by it. It's not just the ruined homes everywhere and mile after mile of buildings reduced to piles of rocks, but it's the people. From the beggars to the overzealous baggage guys at the airport who literally pulled David's bag out of his hand to carry it - and therefore get a tip - the people are desperate and hopeless and more than enough to shake you up. And therefore my dear wife whose name is not really "The M" is awash in sorrow and compassion. I wish I was there to hold her, but I know she is experiencing the heart of God right now, and in this I take comfort.