Home Wrecked

A few years ago in El Salvador I saw real poverty for the first time. At the end of the week we gathered just off the hotel lobby, circled up in metal folding chairs, and talked about how we were feeling.  Diving so far, so quickly, into poverty can nearly drown the heart and mind of an affluent American and so this is the standard way of ending a Compassion International “vision trip.” Depressurizing a little in a group before the plane ride home is safer for the soul than being yanked to the surface alone by the sights and sounds of the O’ Hare food court.

When it was my turn to talk about my feelings all I felt was insignificance and so I vomited that emotion up everywhere.  (With a lot more words) I said just didn’t care anymore.

About what?  About what color we paint the den.  About whether my song is climbing the charts.  About who the president is.  About the gig next week.  About what kind of cheese I can get on my Subway sandwich.  About seeing that new movie.  About that new laptop I wanted.  About telling the interviewer what kind of animal I’d like to be. About mowing the yard.

I just didn’t care anymore.  It didn’t feel significant – none of it – not standing back to back with feeding kids, teaching them to read, giving them life-saving medicine, teaching their moms how to sew, telling them they matter to God and to me.  Nothing in my whole life back home seemed as significant as my week in El Salvador with Compassion International.  Nothing.

So I changed my life.

I changed my job, politics, theology, church, closet, free time, budget, house, parenting, show.  I sought, and am still seeking, to make my life here in America as significant as one week in El Salvador.

imageI tell you all this because it’s time now for the Uganda bloggers to fight the same kinds of emotions and weigh the same kinds of life changes.  So, if you’re part of their life, try to understand they’re quite possibly morphing into something else.  And pray that it’s something significant. Pray that we’re not so wrecked that we’re poor teachers, poor communicators and friends, repellant to those we desperately want to introduce to the children and God we’ve fallen in love with.

Pray for…