Greyson had the stomch flu not long ago. He was pretty miserable the first day. It was no fun and I hated it for him. At bedtime that night after the shower was done, the jammies were on and he was tucked snugly into bed. He began to cry. I rubbed his back and looking into his tired eyes, I asked what was wrong?
Hunger. He was hungry and exhausted. Since being awoken by sickness the night before, anything that had previously filled his stomach had been emptied out. The fever had not broke all day. It seemed the last twenty four hours proved too much as the cries turned into sobs.
He couldnt understand why I wouldn't let him eat. He didn't know his body needed sleep. He needed comforting. I felt a little helpless in that moment. I couldn't offer him anything more that some cuddling and reasurance that tomorrow would be better. Finally, he settled down and fell into a much needed sleep.
I walked back upstairs and began to cry myself. Not becaues I too was exhausted, but because a few days earlier I had watched a video about the countless displaced people on the other side of the world. The clip kept circling in my mind. I saw the first hand account of people reaching solid ground after being at sea. Packed like sardines in a tiny little life boat, they risked all they had to find safety for their children. I had been thinking about the clip for days and seeing my boy crying and in pain made me think of those kids.
I thought about the little girl who's father just handed her off to complete strangers, asking them to please take her to safety. I can't get the images of that little boy out of my head. The one so similiar in age to mine. His lifeless body washed up on shore. The article I read about the women and her husband who worked like slaves for months to save up enough money to pay the travel fee. They were capsized at sea. Her husband saved her and other women by giving up his life vest. She will spend the rest of her life missing him.
My son was just downstairs safe in bed. He was getting the rest he needed as the bug worked it's way out of his system. At least I had a choice to withhold food for a few hours so his stomach could settle. That's not the case for those kids. The only choice for them was to trade one dangerous situation for another. Just as I felt a little helpless as to how to help my son when he cried. I feel completely helpless as to how to help those running for their lives.
And if this tugs at my heart, it makes me wonder how He feels watching His children suffer.
Since the problem is so far removed, often it's out of sight and out of mind, but it shouldn't be. We should be looking at these people as Jesus does. Dearly loved and deeply treasured. That brings up the question, now what? Here I am, what can I do? So, I compiled a list of organizations that right now have boots on the ground. I can't be there but they can. They are showing the love of Jesus by offering blankets, food, a place to rest, a hug and prayer. People who might never know Jesus are catching a glimpse of Him in these workers. I love that! I love being able to know the Light is being shown in this dark situation.
Give because you can. Pray like their lives depend on it, because they do.
*photos are from Humans of New York, NY Times, CNN, rescue.org and video from Samaritans Purse