Sunday, January 17, 2010

a flash of yellow

This morning my own flesh screamed to stay in bed. Then it became my head, overwhelmed with thoughts to distraction for the last 24 hours or so, about the world around me. I feel caged yet the need to be alone.
But the obvious is the easiest to deal with. It's the less obvious, the deeper stuff that's the hardest to deal with when you can't even define it. There has been an underlying buzzing that has been working its way up, louder and louder underneath obvious layers... but what is it? Where is it coming from? Is it real? Imagined? It's driving me crazy I do know that. Making me want to pace this morning.

Finally I recognized it. It's coming from within. Within myself. It's my heart, my heart is working its way from buzzing into a full blown scream... to scream for relief from what is happening around me - it feels as if it it will burst!

It's not the first time.
My heart was screaming when my dad was lying with his hand in mine in the process of death, struggling to breathe, before he finally heard me say go home and breathed his last in my arms and the peace of God washed over me. My heart sang then finally!

When I first beheld the poverty of Columbia on my very first trip with Compassion International it was in the eyes of a young girl named Evelyne, telling me of being raped and beaten by an uncle numerous times, her fear, hurt, despair... then she sang me and the Compassion International team I was with her own song she had wrote about her Redeemer that she saw in the stars as she looked up each night from her bed while it happened and how He saved her, and how His peace washed over her. My heart sang then in that moment and the screaming stopped!

I know what I need. Him. I dig out my laptop and began opening my favorite sites holding Gods Word. Looking for comfort. I couldn't concentrate. Weird I thought, God's Word brings comfort, yes, but today I still felt like pacing.
Then I heard Him whisper, just sit and talk with me.

So I do and I start with the flash of yellow I saw two days ago in footage from Haiti I cannot get past. I cannot get it out of my head. A yellow shirt on a small body underneath the grey block 5 times bigger than her. My heart vibrates.
The grey is everywhere. Stone, mortar, dirt, sand, lack of life.
So much grey it hurts my eyes to look at it. How? Grey by its definition is a "lack of colorfulness", but it hurts, literally hurts my head and my eyes when I look at the photos and reports
Then that flash of yellow on the news video that caught my eye.
Yellow is such a cheerful color... sunshine, daisies, smooth sweet butter, warmth... my granny Reva showed me how to hold buttercups under a chin and see a reflection of that color underneath.
A little yellow shirt, so bright against the grey. I have not been able to get that little flash of yellow out of my mind. Its beginning to whine, my heart.

I wonder if she felt happier that morning just by putting it on. It looked amazingly clean and bright. Maybe it was new, new to her at least.
She looked size wise to be about 4, but size in Haiti in regards to age is not an easy thing to discern.
Malnutrition has made some children so small for their age, their development process very slow and off somehow.
It doesn't matter I guess in the grand scheme of things that I wonder about.

How did her day begin? You might say it doesn't matter in perspective to how it ended, but it does. How her day began, how every child's day began and begins in Haiti matters, as much there as it does for any child here.
I want to the flash of yellow to go away. I want just as much to never forget it. I want my heart to stop screaming. His peace is at the edges, I feel it like a far away outline of a huge bubble so I know its there. But maybe I am meant to hear the screaming for awhile longer.

The flash of yellow I cannot forget, never will. Her little body was silent and unmoving, grey too with the dust of the rubble on and around her.
That yellow shirt... had her mom or dad, maybe a big sister dressed her, maybe lovingly helped her fix her hair in sassy little braids of sorts sticking up all over her head? Were they alive? Did she die alone?
And my heart is not silenced at all - it is writhing as it screams!

But here's what my God shared with me as we talked this morning.
My heart still moves and screams because it needs and desires His comfort and presence, to be closer to Him in this time, and that is my own dance with Him... It is my Lord drawing me to His heart!
To discover His purpose in the goodness that will come of this is the continuation of the dance. And that takes time. How best to walk through something with someone than to hurt for them, with them, even past them. To be a follower of Christ means to follow Him to where He is needed and to see and feel as He does as much as we can. He feels the hurt, the pain, the loss, and as His we should too. Thank you that I feel you God - that you want to dance with me!

I just read a Twitter post that a baby girl was born safely this morning in Port Au Prince Haiti... in the midst of destruction, life begins anew, life goes on.

2 Corinthian 4:8-10 NLT
8 We (they) are pressed on every side by troubles, but we (they) are not crushed. We (they) are perplexed, but not driven to despair. 9 We (They) are hunted down, but we (they) are never abandoned by God. We (they) get knocked down, but we (they)are not destroyed. 10 Through suffering, our (their) bodies continue to share in the death of Jesus so that the life of Jesus may also be seen in our (their) bodies.

My heart screams so yours won't scream alone, so that new born Haitian baby's heart will not scream alone, and so that other hearts may begin to hear and not remain silent for "them".

screaming in love!

Marisa Lykins