(Note: These next few blogs are some that I wrote while on my Middle East trip this past week. I will be posting them this week)
Today was unlike any other day that I have had in a while. I travelled close to the border area of a war torn country, Syria. I went to a village that had more than tripled in size due to the influx of refugees. Makeshift tents were everywhere. Every crook and cranny was filled with people trying to find shelter. Animal stalls, garages and storage sheds had been converted to barely liveable units.
And I saw scenes…
I saw a young girl with her arm amputated and shrapnel wound all across her torso. She was still in shock and holding her arm up for any body who cared to see.
I saw a baby with shrapnel wounds constantly crying as a local doctor tried to treat her. She was writhing in her mother’s arms.
I saw a worn out man who had just fled his country two days earlier. He crossed over the border with his wife and five children. He is injured himself – bullet wound in his leg and lower back. He doesn’t know how they will survive.
I saw and old man who told us that he has not seen his two sons in over a year. He fears he will never see them again.
I saw babies constantly crying, literally screaming, and they cannot be comforted. They are traumatized and can’t recover from their fear.
I saw a little boy with scars on his face due to shrapnel. The scars stretched as he smiled.
I saw families being exploited in their grief. Many were paying $300 per month for the privilege of renting a filthy cattle stall for their family to live in. As bad as it was, they said it was better than living in make shift tents.
And you know what else I saw? I saw compassion. It was compassion in the hands and feet of our local workers as they were moving among all these needs, giving a word of comfort, offering help such as food and hygiene supplies and more than anything, taking time to listen to the stories of those hurting and then offering words of comfort and hope.
I saw hurt...I saw healing...I saw hope...