Sunday, December 16, 2007
Juarez Reflection: Like Chocolate and Venom
"Immediately, the boy's father exclaimed, 'I do believe; help me in my unbelief!'" (Mk 9.24 NIV)
I am laying in my chilly uninsulated room in the barrios of Mexico. The glow of the small propane heater, set next to my bed, creates lingering shadows upon the darkened walls. I am reflecting on the happenings of the day, thankful that it is ending in the same way it began: I am pleading with God. I am asking him for hope, encouragement, strength, wisdom…joy. I believe that somewhere between His grace and my complete unworthiness He has given me grace to be free; freedom to be His son with no qualms or questions. Though all of my being cannot accept this reality, I choose to believe it. I choose to believe for I have no other hope.
One shadow, dances off the wall reminding me of the vehicle I drove into a ditch this morning causing me to be at the whim of angry neighbors and a vacationing Youthworks! staff. Another, flickers with the event of community contacts standing me up even after I drove a half hour to meet them with presents and baked goods. Still another, displays the bleak hopelessness of the Woman's shelter I visited, and it tells of the ever growing helplessness I feel when I think upon the dim futures of the children I played with. Still another, reminds me of the stuck valve on the propane tank I assumed was shut and began loosening in our living room. The tank, after a frantic run outside by one of the Youthworks! staff, thankfully spewed the deadly fumes into the air instead of toward the stove someone was using. And still another, reminds me of the team tensions and frustrations between our very eclectic group and our aggravating recent interactions with the community. And one more reminds me…and still one more relates…and yet another tells me…
These dancing shadows creep ever closer to my flickering light, swaying and moving with a sultry toxic message – as of venom yet sweet as chocolate. There I lay, cradled close to the last security of the dimming light, ever aware of the advancing dark, and pray:
"I choose to believe! Overcome the black night of this unbelief!"