I’m not sure how Friday can hold so many frustrations and blessings all at the same time.
There’ s been an eye virus making its rounds with a vengeance the past few weeks, kind of like pink eye on steroids. Thursday my left eye started to swell and by Friday morning the right was getting red too. Most of the nannies and kids have already had it, and it reacts differently to each person. Yesterday afternoon, I walked up to some of our nannies and slowly took off my sunglasses. The best thing about this eye infection is the swelling that leaves you looking like a cross between Sloth from the Goonies and Quasimodo. When the nannies saw my puffy eye, they tried not to laugh but it was hopeless. We collapsed into belly laughs at how ridiculous I looked.
Underneath it all was something deeper–it was the understanding that comes when someone goes through the same trial or sickness or hardship that you do. I’m thankful for difficulties of sickness, or waiting on papers or natural disasters, in that it brings me closer to those that I work with. It’s not just their struggle anymore, it’s mine too.
It’s Friday afternoon and someone yells my name. I begrudgingly threw my sunglasses on to go outside. There were the ladies, with hugs and asking how I was feeling. She took a heavy black bag from behind her back, filled to the brim with fresh Haitian mangoes. For the second time that day, my eyes were filling with tears, but this time they were tears of happiness. In the moment, I felt incredibly blessed. I know she walked or took a taxi for a few miles, carrying that sack full of mangoes. She brought that gift without knowing how much my soul needed encouraging today. To me, those mangoes are worth more than gold.
Like a dear friend always tells me, God’s got this. Whether it’s a day, a moment or a season, all of our trials set the stage as opportunities to grow closer to the Lord and grow together with those around us.
"We are all in the same boat, in a stormy sea, and we owe each other a terrible loyalty.” G.K. Chesterton