Thursday, August 28, 2008

In the dark

So, in the dark it's really hard to see... Yes, I'm the master of stating the obvious. Every night at 2100 we do blackout--turn out all outdoor lights, make sure doors and windows are closed, and limit as much as possible any light that might show outside.
Imagine being in a place with little electricity and very little pollution. Now look up at the sky while you're outside in the dark... Amazing, right? Yes, amazing. The sky here is the clearest sky I've ever seen at night. The Milky Way is so clear and the stars are so big here. This almost makes being over worth it.
So, we have this cool little thing called Night Vision Goggles (NVG) here. NVGs are awesome and really fun to play with. They help us see in the dark, which is good in many ways.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Mysterious Ways

So, sometimes miracles work and sometimes they don't.

A few days after we had the little girl with the tumor, we had another little girl incident.

A four year old was riding on a motorcycle with her uncle, when they came under fire. Not exactly sure why, but probably because the uncle is the nephew of one the government leaders here in Farah. Anyway, bullets passed through him, killing him and then into his niece's head.

Of course, when Commander C got the call asking if we could help she said yes. The father and other uncles brought her here and our medics got to work. Once they had her hooked up to the monitors and everything they could tell that she was brain dead, so there was nothing they could do. The father just didn't believe that we couldn't work a miracle and bring his little girl back. One of the uncles fainted. It was awful.

Once it sunk in for the father, he cupped his daughters little face and began kissing it. The family took her away after bringing in a couple of female relatives. The keening noise they made as they cried will not be forgotten soon.

I wasn't there for the whole episode, rather I got there just as they were preparing to leave. It was really hard on everyone, the medics, and the command staff, even for me. It's heart wrenching to see people's pain at losing a loved one. She was so young. No one deserves to get a bullet through the head let alone a four year old girl.

It just reminded what we are here fighting and working for. Every person through out the world deserves to feel safe and secure and ride on their uncle's motorcycle without getting shot by people who hate your other relatives. We are trying to create a place here where people can live without fear and oppression. Slowly but surely I think we are making progress, but it's going to take a while.

God moves in a mysterious way
His wonders to perform;
He plants His footsteps in the sea
And rides upon the storm.

His purposes will ripen fast,
Unfolding every hour;
The bud may have a bitter taste,
But sweet will be the flower.

Blind unbelief is sure to err
And scan His work in vain;
God is His own interpreter,
And He will make it plain.
(by William Cowper)

God moves in mysterious ways, his wonders to perform. I sure don't understand this life sometimes. The violence here makes no sense at all to me. It's even scarier when friends are involved in it. I just trust that God knows what He is doing. That's all I can do.