Sunday, February 21, 2010
A Visit to the Police Station
Saturday I was invited to go out on one of the mobile clinics are team was hosting. Mobile clinics are where we get to take limited healthcare to all of the people who are living in tent cities in Port au Prince. In extreme cases, we found those who were in critical condition and transported them to the hospital. I wasn't sure if this was something I really wanted to do, but by this time I was ready to get outside the four wall of the orphanage and see the city. Also, God had already showed me that He was going to work the way He wanted to so I went out.
We drove through the traffic packed little streets of PAP down to the police station. Aside from this being the first time I had really gotten out to see the city, the smell as we neared the police station grew more and more putrid. The number of Haitians living in sheet tents on the sidewalks without any sign of designated sanitation was overwhelming. The police station is located in the heart of the city, directly across from the palace. We were required to stop here first to pick up Haitian police officers that would travel with us and ensure our safety in case any chaos broke out.
Although the police station had been badly effected by the earthquake, it was still being used as a major headquarters. Not only were the policemen still being housed there, but the major clinic in town was set up on the lower floor, as well as a mini operating room where wound debriding and minor surgeries took place. All of the doctors and nurses that were serving there slept in tents on the roof. It was quite a sight. Within 10 feet of where I was standing, I could hear about 10 different languages being spoken. Literally, people from all over the world were pitching in to serve the Haitian people. This brought me so much hope, and I closed my eyes as I received a small picture of what Heaven will be like one day. Then the realization hit me that heaven is still so abstract and I really can't imagine what it will be like, but I do know that all nations will be represented.
As I mentioned earlier, any expectation of efficiency or speed had to flee. It was clear we were going to be waiting around at the police station for a while as the people in charge tried to figure out which police officers could go out with us. And did I mention it was extremely hot? I hiked up to the roof of the police station, from which you could see most of downtown. The devastation was kind of overwhelming, and I tried to take it all in, trying to sense what God wanted to do and what He wanted to show me in all of this. Surely, it would be difficult to be a blessing (and I felt compelled to be a blessing) if I found myself in a hopeless, desperate state. And God was faithful.
As I looked over the ruins of the city, I did not feel devastated or hopeless but God began to speak to me the love that He had for His people, and the plans that He had to rebuild and restore His people. And I began to experience the power that God pours out on His people. The power and authority that He gives His children to go confidently into battle, claiming His promises and sovereignty over this nation.
After a long while of standing in the hot sun, we were assigned two police officers to go with us on our mobile clinic. It was 10:00 am. We had until 12:00 pm to return the policemen to headquarters because today was their payday. I found out that even on some pay days, they were not always promised to receive their check but they still had to show up in person if they stood a chance of getting paid in order to take care of their families. That gave us about an hour and a half to put on clinic. Whew!
P.S. The brown tents you see in the picture were sent by the Sudanese, and the inside of the tents were covered with the most beautiful green and red patterned material you have ever seen! And because they are familiar with heat and elevated temperatures, the tents were very protective in nature and provided a little respite from the elements!
2 Corinthians 9:8
God is able to make all GRACE abound to you, so that in all THINGS at all TIMES, having all that you NEED, you will abound in every good work.