Friday, January 15, 2010

Comfort

Doug Koop is a guy I know about through an online community. He is a great writer and writes for ChristianWeek.org. I wanted to share with you his words about comfort.
On days like today I have an urge to go completely off the grid, to carve
out a sustainable life in the country without being dependent on computers,
or telephones, or electricity, or oil, or anything that someone else or some
faraway disaster can simply shut down.

Obviously, I'm feeling bad today. But it's really not about me. My own life
has some comforts and routines; in fact, it's full of them. There is a nice
bed to sleep in; a beautiful wife to wake up with; coffee on demand;
newspaper at the door; a comfortable couch to curl up in with a Bible; a bus
just down the street that arrives on time; a book to read and a neighbour to
chat with; a congenial coffee shop downtown with friendly people; a steady
job that provides meaningful work. Oh, I forgot to mention, the hot shower
with a turn of a tap. The picture is clear: my life is comfortable and
satisfying.

But much of that could disappear in a few instants. One day without Internet
access would create chaos in my workplace; one computer crash and many of my
daily touchstones would disappear. A power outage could make my home
unlivable. Face it. A lot of my life is heavily vested in a fragile web.
Circumstances beyond my control could change things irrevocably.

Why am I thinking about these things?

Today it's because of a place I've never been to and where I've never wanted
to go. Haiti. A terrible earthquake has devastated, decimated and destroyed
an already hurting country. I can't begin to imagine what now passes for
living in a place that was difficult enough to live in before the nation's
infrastructure was wiped out, its landmarks reduced to rubble, its people
killed and maimed, injured and suffering. No water; no hospitals; no
airport; no heavy equipment; no anything.

Help is coming. But the best efforts of generous people around the world are
like bits of confetti, bare flutters of compassion in a windstorm of need.
And I feel sorry for myself? Lord, have mercy!

Doug Koop

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