The darkness is so palpable recently. Each day has sufficiently held enough trouble of its own.
We’ve just past the first deadline of the new laws put into effect for Burmese migrants. I can’t even begin to try to explain the ins and outs of it while we are all trying to sort it ourselves here in Mae Sot, expatriates and migrants and locals alike. I do know that we’ve now spent two days at the Labor Office, and both were absolute chaos–like 500 people, over 100 degrees, a legitimate fear of being trampled to death–that sort of chaos.
I also can’t even begin to capture the stress and strain it puts on our neighbors. Poverty is a strain in and of itself, and this is simply a pile of cherries on a very difficult cake to swallow.
I can’t explain the conversations: asking for loans, asking for money for rice; talking about what they should do and what their futures hold. Because no one knows.
And even for us as a couple, this season is just another pile of unknowns and another list of questions. Yet again, our lives are entirely resting on miracles and more miracles, in every direction.
Meanwhile, Daw Ma Oo and her husband are living at a Yangon Hospital, while she receives treatment for her cancer. Her two youngest sons, 12 and 16, are cared for by their other siblings in town.
The assistant pastor at our church fell 8 or 10 meters from a roof on Saturday, leaving him in the hospital with severe head wounds. It’s a miracle he’s alive now, and we’re all praying, praying, praying.
One of the little boys’ parents left him this week. The one we just got into school; the one who we remind to come to our house every morning for breakfast; the one who asks every day if we are playing today at 4pm. Overnight, he became an orphan, because his parents left and he’s in the care of his grandfather–who took care of him while his parents were in prison the first few years of his life. The sadness is palpable.
I sat in church yesterday, fighting back tears from all of this weight, as we celebrated Thai Mother’s Day. The second Mother’s Day of the year, while we wait for placement in our adoption. Sitting next to the little boy who lost his mother on Wednesday. Thinking of the family of four kids who told me they weren’t going to school Friday because it was a Mother’s Day celebration, and you only go if you have a mom. Thinking of The Breakfast Club, and the hungry, hungry kids that come every day, threatening to break me with emotion each and every morning. Thinking of how to possibly pray for all the things: the friend current in surgery to drain the blood from his brain; the friend currently in chemo; the kids currently scared of losing their mom; the kid who just lost his mom; the kids who still mourn the loss of their mom.
And then we had cake, to celebrate Mother’s Day and a first birthday of one of the kids from our community. I think I’m definitely learning how to cater to my audience when it comes to cake decor.
Maybe you feel the same? America isn’t shining at the moment, and sadness seems palpable there, too.
Not all the cake & holidays in the world can make it all go away.
And yet a light shines in the darkness. The darkness has not overcome it.
These faces still shine with joy.
And this week, their heavenly Father has fed them, again. Sometimes in our own home.
Walking with us, sitting next to me on Mother’s Day and mourning their friend, too, are our pastors. They walk this road with us and provide such sweet camaraderie.
Our home is still a place of peace for all ages.
And this guy still finds new places for us to explore. And just sit at and be.
And he takes me there for a few hours on Saturday, to just read and see the beautiful views and be best friends.
The darkness is palpable wherever we are. But the light still shines. The darkness has not overcome us.