Sunday, September 1, 2013

Air vs Land Bombs

They both have a low rumble, like thunder…or how thunder would sound if rain ever came during the summer here in Jordan.  Five miles away from the Syrian border, I have learned how to tell which kind of bombs are exploding.  Those from the air shake the ground while those from the land merely make noise. 

Now, I am by no means an expert on what is happening in Syria. I’ve never even been there.  All I’ve done is live near the Syrian border and work with refugees.  I’ve talked to Syrians, Jordanians, and other ex-pats who live in the area and there is no obvious consensus on what they believe should be done, who should be in power, etc.   Most of them end up throwing their hands in the air saying, “There is just no good way out of this situation.”  Oh may God bless the leaders of nations with His wisdom!  But not in them will we trust, but we "hope in the LORD; for with the LORD there is mercy, and with Him is abundant redemption" Psalm 130:7.

Unrest around the city has been ramped up these past couple weeks.  There have been a few murders and lots of rumors.  Talk around town says the men were killed due to an old tribal feud, a random targeting at the university, a drug deal gone bad, it was discovered that a rich guy had cash on him – hearsay is rampant.

We were having a farewell grill-out for a guy, so a couple of my friends and I went into town for food.  As we were driving, all of a sudden six armored military jeep/tanks drove past us, lights flashing and sirens blaring.  We looked around and saw a hoard of people running down a street towards us, appearing terrified.  I didn't recognize what a rare that sight was till seeing it.  One of the guys running shouted in English, "Don't go to the market!"  Praise God for him because none of us were fluent in Arabic so hadn't a clue what the frightened masses were shouting.  Maybe he was an angel.  I don’t know, but he alerted us as to where stuff was happening and we subsequently changed our course from the market to away from the market and whatever was going down! 

Due to the nature of the road, we traveled along with the jeep/tanks for a while and were amazed at how few cars pulled over to make way for them.  When we got an opportunity, we deviated left when the tanks went right. There was a store right there so we were able to get most of we needed, but then decided safety was more important than the rest of the food and our own insatiable curiosity and and went back to the hospital (thankfully to our hospital and not the local one where a fire was started in the ER - that’s the rest of the story from my ambulance post – the ER had just reopened after repairs after this crazy day!).

We came to find out that there was a big fight in the marketplace between Syrians and Jordanians because each were blaming the other for the murders.  I’m sure this was only the tip of the iceberg with all the tension surrounding things that may potentially happen in and to Syria.

And in case you’re wondering, no I was not scared and no, this should not make you concerned about my mental state. :P  I believe wholeheartedly that God is sovereign.  He is in control of everything.  This does not make me feel invincible by any means.  I have prayed that I may bring glory to God – whether that be by my life or by my death, and He can allow either at any time.  I pray God gives me faith to say continually with Job, “Though He slay me, yet will I trust in Him,” and with the Psalmist, “The LORD is my light and my salvation: whom shall I fear? The LORD is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?”

Also don’t let this make you concerned about my physical safety, either.  I waited till I left Jordan to post this just for your ease of mind.  I’m spending a few days with friends in London before coming back to the good old US of A, but I will say it wasn’t easy leaving my new friends in the Middle East on the brink of a potential war.

      (See? Made it safely to London)

An anonymous missions worker once said, “Remember, when you see a missionary coming home broken in body and weary in soul, it isn't the privations or dangers or things he's done that leave a deep hurt; it's the things he couldn't do that break his heart.”

I am completely convinced that God’s timing is perfect, but that doesn’t mean I’m not sad to leave at this time. Syria is a mess.  They need so much help.  

May our merciful God spare lives. May He draw people to Himself. May He show Himself strong and bring glory to His name through this impossible situation.  

I love you all, 
Cara :)

I leave you with words from an old hymn I believe to be timely for Syrians (and others!) right now...

Down in the human heart, crushed by the tempter, feelings lie buried that grace can restore;
Touched by a loving heart, wakened by kindness, chords that were broken will vibrate once more.
Rescue the perishing, care for the dying. Jesus is merciful, Jesus will save.