It has been a while. Since my last writing I have had many thoughts and ideas. To take the time to finish a writing I guess I needed a push. The push came in the form of spending time in the company of a great man. A man who has dedicated 27 years with his blood sweat and tears in trying to bring healing to the most vulnerable in a Country not his own. This Saturday I sat and listened as Brian McConaghy ian founding Director of Ratanak
International spoke of his life trying to help those in Cambodia. This past Summer my family vacationed in Croatia. My "bed" the first night was two air mattresses pushed together. For some reason I ended up in the middle of the mattresses on the hard floor. I thought of stories of people born in other Countries who immigrated to Canada had told me. These people love Canada, but they feel Canada is not their real home. These people also love their former Country but when they go back to visit , things have changed so much they feel this is also not home. Later on that sleepless night I thought of my two homes. Earth is my present one, one where to many problems persist. I fear the news, I fear stories, for my present home is full of despair, and heart break. Heaven by God`s grace is my future home. No wonder so many people are unhappy on earth, this is not how it was supposed to be. The best night in Croatia also had the most pain. Through social media a party was set up for a family who had not seen each other in thirty years. It was one of the nicest experiences of my life. Watching family members embrace, laugh, sing, and cry was priceless. Partway through my dinner my youngest Daughter through tears tells me "there is a sick dog outside." Off I go, as we approach the dog it collapses. My immediate reaction is anger God I think "Why now? Why this dog? Why my Daughter? Why me? Why of all nights tonight?" I put my hands on the dog and pray for God to have mercy on this poor creature. Realising my Daughter`s heart has made this my problem I start to act. I smuggle bread and water out of the restaurant. The poor dog eats and drinks quite a lot. Seeing it trying to move brings tears to both of our eyes, as we see it`s obvious pain. Patting and praying for the dog is all we are able to do. When it gets dark, the dog seems to sleep and we go back inside the restaurant. Izzy asks me about the dog and I tell her "unless God performs a miracle, this dog has hours to live. We did our best to show it love, and filled it`s last hours with comfort and dignity." A few nights later at a different restaurant our family has another visitor. I notice both daughter`s looking very guilty and realise they are giving their dinner to their visitor. The visitor is this kitten who somehow has made it to "Dr Dolittle." My family lingered over our dinner and enjoyed this beautiful surprise.
During his visit Brian showed me one picture from his laptop. Before he showed it he talked of this girl`s life, she had been sent to another Country as a domestic servant (slave) and had been beaten many times before somehow escaping back to Cambodia. I was afraid of looking at a graphic picture of a young girl and the results of a beating. I was pleasantly surprised as a beautiful young girl looking radiant as she smiled for her picture looked back at me. Brian told us this young girl had thanked him and the Ratanak staff for showing her love. Looking at her picture I see a young woman who has a future, has hope and has had her dignity restored. It has been an honour to work with and support such an organization. An upcoming event is a celebration of the 5km walkathon, with a silent auction on October 26. Earth is full of stories and people like my experience with the "old dog." It is a fallen world with fallen people. These stories don`t wait for the right time to come to us. Yet God expects and allows us to be his hand`s and feet to such people, and though I do not like being exposed to such stories, that is life. Heaven is stories such as the young kitten, lovely, beautiful, and nice. Until Heaven comes God wants us to immerse ourselves in the stories like the old dog.