Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Devastation in Haiti

My heart is breaking. The numbers are staggering. The devastation is worse than anything any of us has ever seen in our lives.

It's mind boggling, what's going on in Haiti right now. Absolutely beyond imagining that anywhere from 100,000 to a half a million people could be wiped out in one day.

And yet there are those who want to place blame. I've already ready stories about people with something less than compassion in their hearts who want to play God and tell everyone why this happened.

Why do we feel the need to speculate on why God does what He does? Really, He's God. That's all. It's His creation. His world. He can let happen what will happen.

We all do that though, don't we? We all, at one point or another, ask ourselves, "How could God do this to me?" Or to our loved one . . . or to the world.

The disciples asked the same question: "Lord, who sinned? This boy or his parents that he was born blind?" Every time I read that passage in the Bible I think, "What a stupid question."

And yet, I'm no better. A tragedy takes place like the one in Haiti this week and I find myself asking why? Or how? Or what have these people done to deserve this? I even have thoughts of thank God it didn't happen here.

But really, what we need to focus on when something like this happens is who God is. He is the Creator of the Universe. A loving God who cares for His children--all of them. He is the sustainer of life and, most importantly, a Savior for all mankind.

Yesterday during our Women's Bible Study leader's meeting we read Psalm 103 together.

The LORD is compassionate and gracious,
slow to anger, abounding in love.

He will not always accuse,
nor will he harbor his anger forever;

he does not treat us as our sins deserve
or repay us according to our iniquities.

For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
so great is his love for those who fear him;

as far as the east is from the west,
so far has he removed our transgressions from us.

As a father has compassion on his children,
so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him;

for he knows how we are formed,
he remembers that we are dust.

As for man, his days are like grass,
he flourishes like a flower of the field;

the wind blows over it and it is gone,
and its place remembers it no more.

But from everlasting to everlasting
the LORD's love is with those who fear him,
and his righteousness with their children's children-

with those who keep his covenant
and remember to obey his precepts.

The LORD has established his throne in heaven,
and his kingdom rules over all.

Psalm 103:8-19

So today, rather than pointing a finger at God or at the people of Haiti, let's just remember Who is in control of the world. And let's do whatever we can to aleviate the pain of those who are hurting.

If you are able and interested, here are a few reputable charities who are already doing relief work in Haiti. Samaritan's Purse. Compassion. World Relief. Red Cross.

And pray. Pray for the people of Haiti. Pray for the relief workers. Pray for the families here who are worried sick about their loved ones.

"Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done."



  1. One thing that really struck me when learning about Heaven is that we forget that this world we live in is under the Curse. The Curse of sin, self, and the devil's wiles. We were not created for this. But it is where we live for now. Because of that the whole earth suffers from things it was never created to do such as earthquakes and violence in the weather.

    Until we are safe with God living in eternal Heaven we must expect this world to bring sorrow and suffering. We get it backwards. We think that suffering is abnormal but in a cursed earth it IS normal.

    It is tragic that some are using Haiti's past choices to somehow justify or explain their suffering now. But even people who are in the media or public eye are flawed, fallen people whether saved or unsaved. We must remember that and just try to put on Christ all the more.

    Wow, that was really serious.

  2. I totally agree with you, Linda. You make some really great points.

    I think what I was trying to say, and probably didn't do very well, is that none of this is God's "fault" and God did not to this to punish the people of Haiti. Plus, it's just not our job to speculate about it. We live in a sinful world and earthquakes and violence are a result of that, which is what you said.

    I love your thoughts! Thanks for writing them down.

  3. Shelly, this is a heartfelt and beautiful post. You reflected some of my very own feelings. As kindred sisters in Christ, we'll keep praying and acting on His behalf together.