His Eyes Honduras
Mission related and personal items by Felipe Colby
Thursday, March 26, 2015
What is it all about?
You can tell I am angry and frustrated when I end a sentence/title with a preposition. My high school English teacher Mr. Eiler I believe would endulge me since this creative writing. Oh how I wish it was creative and not real. Creative works usually end with resolution. Real life is messy, undefined, and often left with no resolution, at least in the short term (have you listened to the NPR Serial podcast? Perfect example.)
Here we find two days of people. Not all the people in those two days, that would be even harder.
Esteven used to come to the Milk Project. He "aged out" as we say, as the staff had to put some rules on the ages that can come...not too young, nor too old, as we have limited space, teachers, etc. and to get everyone on the same page already with so many kids of different ages is hard. So, after 12 they have to leave.
Leave to go where?
Here we were posing looking off in deep thought to the future. What future indeed. He was hanging out in the stairwell because...he wanted to come back inside and participate. Most of his friends are still there. But he is out. I understand the rules. They make sense on paper, and they help the Milk Project overall, but that does not mean the situation can not still piss me off a bit. Offended? Yeah...me too.
This does encourage me to long for the new building to be completed. Maybe when we make the move we can also add another class just for teenagers. Longing for the future though...we must still live in the present. I sat down and spent some time with Esteven while the group entertained the rest of the kids. I would say I was glad I had the presence of mind to stop and pour a little bit into him...but it was not me but just a little instance of God stopping me and turning my head to where He wanted me to go.
Walking in the clinic is usually pretty easy. Despite a place for sick people...it is usually upbeat. In an odd way...people are happy to be there, or at least I would hope that through our testimony...they are happy such a place is there.
When I saw Darwin and Axel talking with and about this patient to his family members though...I knew it was not good.
Turns out this is a case of someone being shot, being discharged from the hospital...but not recovered or given further instructions.
There are often no good answers, no sure fixes, no good news physically. It is easier to discharge and hide. Our clinic is not like that...we have the hard conversations and give people the truth. And the truth is...sometimes the truth hurts.
Many of you have seen our friend here. He does not talk nor hear, although he does laugh quite a bit. In fact...I am hard pressed to think of a time when he is not smiling.
The missionaries we worked with when we interned here introduced us, explaining that he used to work officially here at the airport carrying people's bags, but then someone stole something and since he could not defend himself, he was the easy one to blame. Since then he hangs out on the sidewalk hoping to get some work where he can. Someone in the group that was leaving gave 10 Lps to Soren to "find something to spend it on" and Soren's eyes got huge when they said that. I stopped to take a picture here with the Captain hat (and shirt from the Virginia Air Corps?) and before I knew it...Soren handed him that 10 Lps.
Jerry is not shy. He did not want his picture taken at the Milk Project, but that is about the only time he was not excitedly moving, usually out of his chair, asking questions, asking for more tortillas. Spending time with Jerry can be a bit exhausting in a good way.
It is also quite possible it is more time than he gets to spend with his dad. It is not uncommon for fathers to not be present at all, or out all day trying to find work somewhere. Scary thought.
Not as scary as reading today World Vision reporting that at least 400,000 minors in Honduras work. Some spending all day in the fields, maybe looking for plastic to sell, maybe cleaning homes...maybe much worse.
Cristobal has been at Hospital Escuela for seven months now after falling playing soccer and damaging his spine. Supposedly the original injury is fixed, but something else that happened still needs more surgery. Sound vague? It is a repeatable story unfortunately, although thankfully most go home before seven months.
He gets around on a wheelchair (not his...they pass them around in the ward where there were at least 20 other kids) and his legs have atrophied. At his age he is one of the oldest kids there. He takes scissors and pop cans to make little art pieces to sell when he can or to send back with his mom once a week when she can come visit.
He was happy to get a visit from someone other than the six year old in the bunk next to him. Not that the six year old is a bad kid...but when you are 17, plus stuck there for months, without family or friends, without anything to do for long stretches...well, it is a little hard for me to imagine.
Cecilia complains she cannot see well with her glasses. Only for six months or so. She got an eye exam and will get some new glasses. How many kids get their mom to give them an exam?
How many moms wish their kids could get an exam?
How many times do I pray that we are helping her see the world as God would have her see it...even if sometimes what that means eludes me. What is it all about? Big picture is easy...honoring and glorifying God, loving your neighbor as yourself.
In the little pictures though it is sometimes fuzzy.
Glasses like God's word, prayer, and the Holy Spirit make it a bit clearer sometimes...sometimes just enough clearer to keep going. Resolution comes...but not when you plan for it, not always when you think you need it, and that is ok. It better be, because more of life daily lived is in the fuzzy parts of not knowing than the clarity of what you know. May God guide us all in that clarity to walk through the plethora of fuzzy parts we do not understand.
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