Monday, October 25, 2010

While It Is Called Today

Yesterday morning at 4 a.m. I was jerked awake by the squealing of brakes and smashing sounds followed by an explosion of bright light. I ran to the girls' 2nd-floor bedroom window to witness a car accident just meters from our house. From my viewpoint I could only see one vehicle yet as emergency crews arrived it became apparent that there was another in worse shape outside my line of vision.

Firemen lowered two stretchers and headed to the scene. After some time one stretcher was returned to the truck and the ambulance drove off with sirens blaring. Emergency workers stood uncomfortably in groups of three or four and everyone seemed to be looking in one direction. It was then that I realized there must have been another vehicle involved - most likely with a fatality - because in Chile a victim's body remains at the scene for however long it takes for the coroner to arrive.

Tragically, this morning's paper confirmed that was the case. A young mom was killed instantly just four blocks from her home when she and her driving companion turned into the path of an oncoming SUV flying down a blind hill. This road directly in front of our house is the scene of countless crashes because of this very scenario - in fact, shortly after this accident a car speeding down the same hill saw the accident in front of him, braked to avoid it and crashed as well (with apparently minor repercussions.)

What saddens and frustrates me is that so many of these accidents could be avoided. At 4 a.m. on a Sunday morning (when I am usually sound asleep) I found myself watching literally dozens of cars on the road, presumably headed to or from various party joints in Iquique. Small groups of teenagers were awake and walking down the street and within minutes a crowd had gathered at the scene of the accident, some with cameras. In contrast, by 10 a.m. when we usually head out to church, the entire city is seemingly sound asleep.

This tragedy was another sober reminder of why we are here as missionaries. From one minute to the next, this life can be (and often is) suddenly ended. We are surrounded by people who think that filling up with as much pleasure as possible before the end comes is what life is all about. Yet none of those pursuits truly satisfies the God-shaped void in their hearts.

Please pray that we would seize every opportunity to share Christ while "it is called Today" (Hebrews 3:13.) As a song based on this verse lyrically expresses:
There is a time when the sun goes down
And the flowers are laid on the grave
Will the tears that fall to the ground
Be the tears of regret for the words someone didn't say
Yesterday morning outside my daughter's bedroom window, I witnessed the death of a woman who may never have heard the Word of Life. We are called to share that Word with the people around us. Pray that for God's glory and their eternal destiny, we will be faithful and courageous to do just that!

3 comments:

Life with Kaishon said...

Oh. This saddens me so Steph. I will pray for her family. I can not imagine their pain and loss. Tragic.

I hope you can share with many. And I pray that they will abandon the fun and the flash of the world for the brightness of Jesus.

Love, Becky

Deborah said...

Praying with you, my Dear One. <3

Heather said...

Thank you for taking the time to share this story Steph. We all need to shine for Christ.

God bless you and your work there,
Heather