Friday, February 22, 2008

I SIT HERE WEEPING...

...wondering how I can even carry on in this ordinary, American life when mothers are dying of HIV/AIDS and leaving their babies as orphans in a country besieged with this horrific pandemic. My time in Swaziland renewed my passion for that nation and its beautiful people. It also has basically wrecked my outlook on my life. I have always been a very content person. My husband says I'm the happiest, most content person he knows.

I don't feel that way anymore. My recent trip to Africa has left me dissatisfied. I can't just keep living out this too comfortable, all-about-me-and-mine life. Something has GOT to change.

I've been struggling with these feelings since returning nearly 3 weeks ago, but I just read a report from Swaziland that has left me crying and having a hard time even responding appropriately to my children and their naturally childish demands and needs. Here's what I read at Adventures in Missions staffer Seth Barnes' blog:

We have a team in Swaziland, that nation in Africa where nearly half the adult population has the AIDS virus. I received this email from Gary Black in Swaziland today and it wrecked me:
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"The team found a four week-old laying on its dead mother yesterday, they kept it - we are getting it to the abandoned baby hospital Friday."

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What do we do with this? That's my son's team down there. I don't know about you, but I'm outraged by a world that produces situations like this. And while that may seem like a world away to many, for my son, it's as immediate as it is heart-wrenching.

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The only thing that appalls me more is that so many of us Americans who can do something about this are more interested in stuff that will only ultimately burn up in the big fire. God help us. God, help us to wake up. Help us to see how much you love the widow and the orphan. God help us to break as you are broken up over this four week-old. God, help me to lose this tortoise shell religion that sheds these kinds of tragic situations like water. Forgive me God for not praying more. Forgive me for not emptying my bank account for your little ones. God, we have lost true religion. We have sought finer sanctuaries and better parking lots. We have tried to fill our church pews with seekers, but we have not sought your children dying on their mother's chests. We need to see a way out of this mess that we've got ourselves in. God, help us in this 21st century mindset that we've acquired. I don't even know what else to pray.


http://www.sethbarnes.com/
http://garyblack.myadventures.org/

4 comments:

Emily said...

Thank you for sharing this.

Rhonda Jeanne said...

love you, girl.

Karen Deborah said...

I understand. If God wants you to go back he will make a way. Right now he has you here with your family. If ya'll are supposed to go as a family then God will work on Jim's heart. The world is a place full of trouble. But God,...they FOUND the little baby and he was rescued, that is a good thing. That was a miracle for that child and now he has a chance to grow up. God has given you a beautiful family take joy in them.
Sing pretty lady, sing,...it will lift your heart.

~Deidra~ said...

Oh Elysa...my heart breaks with you over this tragedy. I just knew that you have been struggling since you returned home. This burden that you feel must seem overwhelming. This is a natural reaction for anyone who has a heart...there is no way you could have seen what you saw and not feel the way you do. Take the time that you need to grieve. I pray that God will give you and Jim the wisdom to know what it is that He has planned for your family. Sending a big {{{HUG}}} your way!