Hard Things & Great Things often go Together -
2. Hard: It was hard to view, for seven days, constant and complete devastation, not only on the landscape, but especially on peoples' faces. That is what really brought trauma to my soul. Perhaps the hardest thing was to look into the face of children and see no sparks of joy or playfulness left in them. It broke my heart to offer them smiles, toys, balloons and hugs and yet be given blank stares in return. Many of the kids did respond, but we need to continue to pray for those who are still in deep despair.(The view just a few hundred yards down the hill from the elementary school. Many kids lost friends and family here.)
2. Great: Through serving, even for just a little bit, I believe many people's hearts and souls were lifted tremendously, including the souls of many kids. Several kids jumped on my back and played with me. They were eager for love, and I was eager to give it. It was a great joy to smile and laugh with some evacuees and bring them true conversation and partnership. It was enough to tell them that they are not alone, that we are with them.Outside Kamaishi City, there were hundreds lined up to get free food and enjoy true fellowship. It is a very uncommon sight in Japan. People laughing and crying and hugging and laughing again. No one was hiding behind their usual masks, afraid of showing suffering here. The grace of free food began to mingle with the grace of genuine openness and love. I was so blessed to be a part of it.