what can i say

deeply saddened?

outraged?

grieved?

at a loss for words?

no, honestly, it’s hard for me to use any of those when i think about my gut reaction to what’s going down in Louisiana.

are you serious?

yes. i’ve said it before and i’ll say it again. it’s hard for me to think about a bad situation that isn’t affecting me personally, and get very emotional about it. it’s not how i react naturally. and it may be the result of years of not reacting to a lot of things. i’m sure i can find a way to blame it on my childhood. but that’s not quite what i’m about.

you see, i’m one of those people who, while fully aware that a situation stinks (to say the least), more often than not will say, this is just another sign of the mess we’re in and how much closer we are to getting out. i consider myself an optimistic realist. that’s up for debate perhaps but instead of pondering the awful nature of life, i’d rather look at the big picture and concoct a way to make things better. no, i don’t want to send money to relief efforts. i don’t even have money to send. and as far as i’m concerned, Oprah, Bill G, Donald, and a few others need to open their banks along side the U.S. government and there will be enough money. Bush II needs to feed the people by any means necessary, etc, etc.

yes, my role has nothing to do with money. it has everything to do with where i am. the context for my work has nothing to do with Louisiana though my prayers should have everything to do with Louisiana. my context is Lacombe, Alberta (Canada) where thousands of people may not have the understanding of God they should have. and where hundreds aren’t getting the kind of food they need. and others aren’t getting the kind of clean entertainment they should be. some know nothing of contentment or grace. others have skewed notions of love, etc, etc.

this is where my eyes look, my strength goes. i’m not here to save…i don’t have that kind of power. i’m here to use what God’s given me every single day.

3 Replies to “what can i say”

  1. i thought i was the only one who wasn't torn up by Katrina that way! After i got an email from a friend about the issue, i sent an reply explaining my seeming apathy towards the events in N'awlins. i thought i was crazy. Now i know that, if i AM crazy, i'm not the only one…

    i do just tend to be more concerned about the things i can change and am assigned for doing something about…and leaving the rest, through prayer, to God. That's always ever only it for me.

    Can't remember the last time someone looked into her head and detailed my thoughts so accurately…nicely!

  2. it's interesting to hear you say that you feel distant from it, but at the same time I can understand it because you're not here. I'm often that way when I'm physically at a distance from the horrible situations that happen on this planet on the daily. this hurricane however, has gotten to me and I guess it's because I am feeling the results of it. folk from Katrina will be arriving in dc this weekend. I have a friend who lives down in Texas who now has many of the people from the superdome now living in his city, and he's requesting our help. I feel very moved and passionate about this, and I'm glad. I'll be going to chuch tomorrow to hear what our conference's plan of action is, and I'm looking into what I myself can do personally. Life always matters most when it's in your face, and I think the phrase “reality check” is very appropriate to this situation.

  3. k, my physical distance has a bit to do with it but not everything. i'm used to not dealing with suffering. i've done it since childhood, since i left liberia. it's a coping mechanism. however, i do find it easy to get mad at the government. it's always easier to bad mouth those in charge and i'm always ready to discuss the politics of something. if this happened closer to home, i'd be more than ready to go and physically help but no money. even if i had it to give. i'm too skeptical. it'll be interesting to see how the church responds to all of this (beyond ADRA). bus loads from andrews went down till tuesday.

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