Summer of My Discontent*

The day started early, but not early enough. Accidently setting my alarm for 3 p.m. rather than 3 a.m. caused me to wake up forty-five minutes late. Heading for the track anyhow, I managed a three mile walk, yes walk, not a run. Attempting to run, my body rebelled. A palatable tension has camped out in my shoulders; it arrived last week and seems content to stay awhile. Perhaps my misplaced Mojo now resides in China. If so, endeavoring to run a half marathon in October may be a futile undertaking. Or perhaps my Mojo is waiting for me in the Caribbean Islands.

In approximately 36 hours I depart for Haiti. Physically preparations are complete; suitcase packed, malaria pills acquired, and transportation arranged. Emotional and spiritual preparations complete? I just don’t know. How does one prepare to enter a country still recovering from the effects of a devastating earthquake? My emotions are a jumbled mess. Murmuring doubts fill my mind; “five days isn’t enough time to make a difference.” Certainly those doubts are false; God is able to accomplish what he desires in the time available. Listening and submitting myself to his will, that is my only responsibility. Still, there are obstacles to overcome. Pangs of jealousy threaten to run rampant. Part of the Haiti team landed yesterday, without me. Since they arrived first they will see more and experience more than I will. Such pettiness is ridiculous but these are my struggles. Something else plagues me. Thoughts of spending five days in Haiti and then returning to the daily work grind conjure up dread. Knowing the difficulty of the transition, I would prefer to fast forward right through it.

My struggles should not be mistaken for a lack of gratitude. Sunday, as my church family gathered around the Haiti team to pray over us, emotions welled up, forcing tears to my eyes. God chose me; flawed mess that I am, to show his love to orphans. Having the opportunity to hold babies with no Mamas is worth every struggle I may face. My perceived pain and suffering dim in light of their circumstances. As the sun sets, night falls and sleep overtakes me, I am at peace. Whether the alarm goes off at the proper time, whether my body cooperates or rebels, whether or not doubts surround me, my path is chosen, and my destiny set, never looking back, no time for regret.

*Title borrowed from William Shakespeare

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