Thursday night, I had a vivid dream about being in an earthquake. Interestingly, I was in the bathroom of a fast-food restaurant when it happened. Becky and Jody were there (not sure why Amy wasn't), and we seemed to be the only three people who knew what to do (stand in the doorway, of course).
Friday morning, I got to work and started reading newspaper headlines only to discover that Peru suffered a massive earthquake on Wednesday. How very sad. I just finished a book about Dr. Paul Farmer (called "Mountains Beyond Mountains") who has spent all of his adult life providing free health care to the world's poorest people in Haiti. He and his organization, Partners in Health ( www.pih.org), campaign for AIDS and TB treatment for the world's poor, and they have a large TB program in Lima, Peru, which isn't far from the area of Peru most devastated by the earthquake. Furthermore, Hurricane Dean is predicted to pass over Haiti soon, where it will dump floods of water on the mountain regions where Haiti's poorest people live. Erosion and mudslides are inevitable given the lack of trees and plants. Needless to say, this concerns me. At the very least, I hope PIH's facilities and peeps survive. Hospitals are gonna be in high demand. Part of me is tempted to look to God and ask why these things have to happen to the destitute, but then I'm reminded that it's my responsibility to: 1.) help rebuild, 2.) make sure they don't remain destitute, and 3.) make poverty a thing of the past. The problem is, I don't know how to do any of these things.
I've been really frustrated lately because I feel a calling to get out there and try to solve these problems, but I don't know where to begin. I don't know how to start, or what direction to head in. All anyone really asks for is money, and unless I sell all my personal possessions, I don't have any money to give. Unfortunately, I know what Jesus has to say on this subject. Like the rich young man who asks what he must do to follow Jesus, I find most of the Way easy to follow, but I balk at the last little bit: "Go, sell your possession and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me." (Matthew 19:16-30) I want to do this. My conscience and my conviction are all for it. But I am weak, oh so weak. In the end, I do nothing.
On a brighter note, here's a comic from xkcd.com about dreaming: