Fix You: Honduras Day 5

Erik Cooper —  June 16, 2010 — 6 Comments

Fix You isn’t only an epic song by the band Coldplay.  When you come to a developing country like Honduras, it becomes a constant battle you fight.  And lose.

Today we visited another impoverished neighborhood in La Ceiba, home to 13 children sponsored by people from City Community Church.  The kids were energetic.  Grateful.  Full of joy.

But the conditions were what you’d expect in a neighborhood slum.

Enter the dilemma.

I can’t fix what I see here in La Ceiba, Honduras. I want to.  I want to bulldoze these wooden shacks and their pitiful dirt floors.  I want to build suitable structures to house human beings.  I want to make sure every child has two parents, and every parent has a respectable paying job.  I want to stop people from living this way.

I want to.  I really want to.

But I can’t.

So many layers to any mess that creates this kind of poverty. Corrupt politicians.  Socio-economic injustice.  Drug cartels and gangs.  And no ability to imagine a different future.

Poverty cycles.  And then recycles.  You can’t unwind it in 7 days.  You can’t just make a few phone calls, call a town hall meeting, give them the Eliminating Poverty for Dummies book, and fix the system.

But you can help one.

Mandy and I can help Jorge.  The LaGranges can help Anna.  Bill can help Caroline, and the Browns can help Jose.  Andy can help Angel.  Lindsey can help Kenneth.  Mike can help Isis.  And CityCom can walk alongside a little block-wall church called Lilly of the Valley in the outskirts of an impoverished Honduran neighborhood.

But maybe more importantly they can help us, too. Help us lose our self absorption.  Help us separate our understanding of God’s Kingdom from our American way of life.  Help us find Jesus living here among the least of these.

Some days I wonder if those aren’t actually the things that need the most fixing.

6 responses to Fix You: Honduras Day 5

  1. I’m 99% sure that the kid in the red shirt is our sponsor kid, Kevin. So wish we could be there…

  2. Uncle Bob & Aunt Lorraine June 17, 2010 at 6:33 pm

    Erik & Team – Yes, we all need “fixing” – of our wants, desires and unnecessary luxuries. As you are there, you see the tremendous proverty and need of innocent children. Why were we so fortunate to be born here in the US, with Christian parents and a Godly heritage? Help us, O Lord, to be grateful and giving to those in such dire need.

  3. You’re definitely right that the problems aren’t that easy to fix. I’ve been to Honduras more times than I can count and it definitely shows you some rough stuff to deal with and will mess you up.

    But, you hit the nail on the head. I’ve found over the years that we can’t always fix the physical stuff, but if we fix the emotional and spiritual stuff by loving people, then the physical poverty won’t matter so much. Obviously, something has to be done about poverty, but I’ve found that love negates most of the worst effects of the poverty.

    I have my own sponsor child and the truth is I can’t do much for him in the physical. He has adequate food and goes to an amazing school, but his family isn’t much better off financially than they were 5 years ago, before I became friends with his mother. However, just by being a friend to the family and calling occasionally, the kid I sponsor has made tremendous strides emotionally, and he’s developed spiritually in amazing ways.

    So we should fight poverty, and I’ll probably end up moving to Honduras to spend the rest of my life fighting poverty there full time, but the real thing is just what you said. It’s loving people and being there for them. When we do that, poverty loses its power.

  4. Will be purchasing small water hut house and would like to get involved,I will be 10 min south of La Cieba airport let me know how I can get invalid,will be working offshore 9 months a year.

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