In what am I really trusting? I trust in Jesus is my quick and pat answer. For six days I could not understand why the majority of Haitians were continuing to sleep outside six weeks after the earthquake. I saw all the collapsed buildings but many were still standing. I was arrogantly confident that it would not happen again and believed that I was reasonably safe inside. I found myself a little amused by the Haitians who chose the discomfort of stuffy tents to the many damaged but still standing houses. God gave me new perspective when our Haiti Orphan Relief Team went through the terrifying experience of two 4.7 aftershocks.
As the sun begin to set the night after the first nerve shattering aftershock the team was nervously discussing the risk factors of where to sleep. We were staying at a pastor's three story concrete and cinder-block house built to withstand hurricanes. It had indeed withstood the earthquake but was structurally damaged as evidenced by numerous cracks in the concrete floors and walls.
Previous to the first aftershock most of the team had been sleeping in the house in the various bedrooms on the first and second floors. Three members of the team had been taking advantage of the cool outside evening breezes afforded on the flat roof on the third level.
So....as we assessed our options and the associated risk we had the entry courtyard that was narrow and bordered by a damaged twelve foot cinder-block fence on one side and a three story concrete house on the other, the bedrooms in the house, or the third floor roof.
As absurd as it sounds our options were to be crushed by the neighbors house, be crushed inside the pastor's house or ride the roof down from three stories up and hope for only broken bones and not instant death. Does the phrase trapped like rats come to mind? I suppose a fourth option was tents outside the compound but we had no tents and security was an issue so that was not really an option at this point.
Two of us, myself included, opted to stay put inside while the rest joined the roof crowd. At 1:26 AM we were all rattled awake by the second 4.7 aftershock and a slight tremor about thirty minutes later. Obviously the house stood and no one was hurt physically but to say stress and frayed nerves were abundant is an understatement.
For the next four nights I went to bed not knowing if I might be rattled awake by another aftershock or the sight of falling concrete and bricks. I can now understand why most Haitians continue to sleep in tents and I am more compelled to pray for them every night. I think I am also trusting a little more in Jesus. He is the only one worthy to be trusted regardless of where I find myself sleeping.