The Picture I Never Took

After several trips to Haiti, I have an album full of pictures, yet there’s an image so ingrained in my mind that never made the album. It’s a picture I didn’t take, a moment with such great impact that my heart beat a rhythm of compassion never felt before.

As paintbrushes worked diligently up the hill to prepare Pastor Nathan’s transition home in Passe Renne, a small group of Coreluv mission trippers led a Bible lesson to the village children under a tent. To illustrate the account of “Jesus calming the storm”, we used a bench to represent a boat and a parachute underneath to create hectic waves that intensified the scene. The words were powerful as the narrator spoke, “Quite. Be Still” (Mark 4:39). The parachute stopped moving and in the silence of the moment, I heard movement come down the hill outside the tent. Perhaps it was more children who wanted to catch a glimpse of the Coreluv team telling a story. Perhaps it will be a chance for us to share Christ’s great love and power to little lives that do not know Him yet.

The scene was greatly unexpected. Two men in suits walked down the hill as a young woman with fist tightly gripped wailed closely behind them. A few more people walked in lines somberly behind her. Then the moment came that stopped my heart and restarted it with a new beat of deeper compassion. Between the two men was the smallest coffin I have ever seen. The young mother’s head held back in an unnatural way with unforgettable cries, then her body lurched forward to be closer to her baby. Her fists shook high in the air, and it was in that moment that I saw God’s broken heart; He was the mother wailing behind his beloved child.

Does the young mother know that Jesus calms the storm, and if not, how will she know unless someone tells her?

Why is His beautiful harvest dying from preventable causes?

What if someone had stepped in and helped this baby?

That night, I sat on the balcony of the Coreluv guesthouse in tears. Tears for the baby. Tears for the mother. Tears for preventable causes taking lives rapidly in Haiti. Tears for wanting to do more. Tears for those who do not know the hope found in Christ. He is healer. He calms the storm.

Then I think about the children at Myan Children’s Village, particularly Cassandra and her four siblings rescued out of their tragic situation. What if no one was there to hear their cries? What if no one stepped in with a solution? Jesus and a loving home where their six basic needs are met. Would they still feel the sharp pains of hunger? Would something easy to cure, like dehydration, overtake their small bodies? It’s a heart breaking reality that should motivate us to help the poor, the needy, the vulnerable, the fatherless. I hug a healthy Cassandra and the other children at Myan, praising God for breathing a new destiny and life into their bodies because someone, the Coreluv team, stepped in to be used by God in this way.

 

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