Tuesday, August 9, 2011


(photo by Renee Bouldin)

One of the strangest things about Haiti to me was seeing all of these tarps around. Blue, white, proudly displaying the organization that sent them. Some U.N., some charities and some gifts from the American people. They had become roofs, walls, fencing and trash. Dotting the landscape, stark against the poverty around them. It was surreal at times to look out on it. We had long left these remnants of our supposed acts of charity behind us. We had moved on to the next catastrophe.

Yet what had we actually accomplished, because for all our apparent help we were doing nothing more than placing a band aid on a situation that needed complete healing.

I wondered if us great (laughing to myself), Christian missionaries would be able to leave something of more value behind than a tarp. Would our new friends, these orphans, these poor see us as a gift from Christ? Was he as clearly printed on us?

"From Christ.. as a gift to the Haitian people, to the poor and hurting of the world, to the needy orphans, widows, to the lonely and outcasted."  

Sitting here today I don't think he is. I don't think we can claim to love the least of these when we drive our fancy cars, sit in our big churches (which belong to the banks), wear our fancy jeans with rhinestone crosses or sit in our homes that could house a 100 orphans. Who are we fooling when we live this way and then claim a risen Saviour that gave all of himself for a people that did not deserve it? Honestly the only people were fooling is ourselves because a world is watching that is not in the least bit fooled. It sees our hypocrisy, our greed, our selfishness. It sees our tattered remnants that we leave behind and it judges our creator by them.

But what if we became the gift we were meant to be? What if we became a light in the darkness, the mirror image of Christ? What if when people saw the church they saw a heart carrying a banner of hope clearly labeled, From Christ ? And what was left behind changed the landscape of the entire world.

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