Lauren Casper » Embracing the Story

Torn

We have our Youth Group Winter Retreat this weekend. It’s the highlight of the year for the 8th – 12th graders at our church. It’s our first time going since John just started his position as their Youth Pastor in August. There’s been a lot of planning and preparations this week. We’re excited, for sure, but I am struggling. I am having such a hard time getting myself in the “fun – retreat” type disposition. It just doesn’t feel right to me.

Here we are – washing sheets and blankets to put on our nice twin size beds at the camp, packing our warm clothes and comfortable shoes for the outdoor activities, picking fun games for the rainy Sunday we’re expecting, loading up the food for meals and snacks… the list goes on. As I type this I am working so hard not to let the tears that are filling my eyes spill out. I am heartbroken. While we are doing all this, there are people on an Island …

Trapped beneath tons of broken cement… searching for their family and friends… hungry for any food that can be found… thirsty for clean water… tired and needing a bed but finding only the side of the street… grieving the loss of their children, spouses, parents, and friends … staring at the pile of rubble that was once their home … lying on a cot in agony because their bones are crushed but there is a shortage of medical staff and pain medication… wondering if this nightmare will ever end…

Oh my heart aches! I am torn! How can I feel joy and excitement for a weekend of comfortable FUN right now? How can I feel good about loading up my car with groceries from Costco for a group of people who have full cupboards at home? I just can’t comprehend what’s happening. It’s not fair. This is one of those terrible contradictions in life. Is a winter retreat for fun and spiritual growth bad? No, of course not! But, in light of what is happening in Haiti, I feel the unfairness of it all.

So – my heart is torn. This, I suppose, isn’t all that out of the ordinary for this broken world we live in.

** update** I just added a button in my top bar from Compassion International. Please consider donating to the Haiti relief efforts! Even just $1 will help. We all have $1. Also – go leave a comment at Amy’s blog – she’s donating an extra dollar for every comment she gets up to $200. If all of her followers and all of mine leave a comment – we’ll have the 200!!

“The LORD is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble. Those who know Your name will trust in You…”
Psalm 9:9-10

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