Cry, The Beloved Country

Although I’ve never read Cry, The Beloved Country, a book by South African author Alan Paton, those are the only words that comfort me as I look through the graphic photos of the devastation in Haiti.  As the people of Haiti cry, so do the citizens of the world. 

I did not truly comprehend the extent of the damage until last night.  Last night I watched the evening news and saw the footage of the buildings, neighborhoods, and people that looked as though they had been broken into tiny pieces.  I couldn’t do anything but fight back the tears.

The sadness and despair that the images convey is too great to bear and I am only seeing an image conveyed through a camera lens.  To be there, living that reality, or to be here with no information on your loved ones has got to be something akin to the tests that Job encountered in the bible. 

I don’t claim to be extremely religious and I don’t attend church like I should but I do believe in God.  It’s during the lowest points that you need to feel a connection with God the most.  However believing in God during a trajedy of such epic proportions evokes a strange mixture of solace and vacancy – solace in my belief, vacancy in the helplessness that this tragedy makes me feel…Why God?  Why did this have to happen to these people?  Why did this happen to this vulnerable country?  God – please help these people.

DS Download:  My grandfather didn’t talk about the bible to much, but I do remember him telling me about the book of Job.  He used to tell me the story of how God tested Job because the devil was convinced that Job only believed in God because of his good fortune – wealth, plentiful crops, children etc.  To show the devil that Job was a true believer God stripped Job of every earthly possession, but even in the midst of tragedy Job did not forsake God…he questioned God, but he never lost his faith. 

I am reminded of the story of Job as I attempt to piece together my own faith in light of this hellish tragedy.  I am reminded that – as my Grandfather would say – I may have doubts and I may question God but if I have faith the size of a mustard seed then that faith can move mountains. 

I guess faith and a true belief in something bigger than us is the only thing that can be comforting in a time like this.  Though we are currently sharing tears with the people of Haiti we look forward to one day soon rejoicing in their triumphs.

To donate $10 to the American Red Cross text “HAITI” to 90999.

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One thought on “Cry, The Beloved Country

  1. Yeah, ummm…what you said! Nice parallel to Job. I did 13 years hard time…in Catholic school (K-12). I’m neither Catholic nor extremely religious, but I am a firm believer in God. Regardless of your religious affiliation or lack of affiliation, I’d like to think that sheer humanitarianism would move everyone to want to contribute to the relief efforts in Haiti. How can you not be so moved to do something?!

    80% of the Haitian population lives below the poverty line; 54% live in abject poverty…and that was during the “good” times. Additionally, only 5% of the country has…had electricity! With the catastrophic loss of life and damages to this poverty-stricken country, an already bleak situation just got that much worse. The pain that they are realizing is beyond comprehension. Their unyielding belief is a true sign of faith. For many of them, that’s all they have…

    As always, I’m especially saddened by those who point to our problems here at home and question why we (the US) are investing so much into the relief efforts in Haiti. Now is not the time! Such arrogance and elitist attitudes continue to divide us here and abroad. Many of us will never truly know such pain and suffering for we are blessed. It’s only right that we unselfishly share our blessings.

    Let’s move mountains!

    – A Citizen of the World

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