About Me

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My passion is helping others defend themselves and their families. I am an NRA Certified pistol instructor, a NRA Chief Range Safety Officer, leader of TWAW Shooting Chapters - North Cincinnati, and the state leader of TWAW Shooting Chapters - Ohio. I also have a heart for the Lakota people and lead mission teams to the Pine Ridge Reservation each year, am founder and director of Backpacks For Pine Ridge,, and do various volunteer work in my own community. My greatest joy is being a grandma and hanging out with my husband of 30+ years.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Hope For Haiti

Like many of you I watched the Hope For Haiti telethon last night. I wasn't sure I wanted to ... I mean how much suffering and sadness can you take in? But turning the TV off and looking away doesn't make it go away.

I was pretty impressed with the telethon. It was nice to see so many stars come together to pull that off and nice to see so many donations pour in. It made me proud to be and American. I'm not always proud of some of the things our country does, but I am proud when we show what we're made of and reach out. I was pleased that they didn't feel the need to identify or glorify any of the stars involved. It wasn't about them. It was about the Haitian people and as far as I could tell, they were the only one's who's names were given. I like that.

I have lots of mixed feelings about the situation in Haiti.

I feel helpless. I can give but I can't give as much as I'd like.

I feel very, very proud of the Haitian people. If they've not taught us all something about faith and courage throughout this horror, then I don't know what could. They are tough. They are courageous. They are beautiful people, both inside and out. When I was there back in 2003 a man walked for 2 hours to get to the clinic at the mission - with a machete in his head that the surgeon said went all the way to his brain. Amazing. That kind of thing happens in Haiti all the time so I'm not all that surprised that they have found people still alive and still praising God after a week under the rubble.

I feel proud that my husband is going there in October. I'm a bit worried about him going, but I'm glad he is.

I wish I were going. I had thought about it ... back when they moved the date from their usual June date to October. I can never go in summer because my time is tied up taking a group to Pine Ridge and then pulling together the REZonate Music Fest. But October, that's my "down time" when I'm not busy ... I could do that. I've not even mentioned that to my husband. I didn't mention it back then and I've not mentioned it since because I can't go anyway ... I can't afford it. The trip is about $1400 and it will be a stretch for us to pay his way and my $800 trip to Pine Ridge. Another $1400 is just out of the question. Yeah, there are fundraisers, but being a pastor's wife puts me (and him) in a really awkward situation ... we draw a salary from the church so to go back and ask for someone to sponsor us to go on a mission trip is just too weird. Other mission team members can send out sponsor letters or do all the "a-thon" fundraisers but that's not too cool for us to do. Oh well ...

I also feel uncomfortable doing a fundraiser this Sunday for Pine Ridge. We've got to raise $4000 for an amphitheater we hope to build. Somehow, in light of the situation in Haiti, it seems really shallow. I don't really believe we're "competing" for dollars ... I believe God has enough for both, but it feels uncomfortable to me. It shouldn't, I know, but it does.

And somehow in the middle of it all I do feel hope. Life is brutal. It doesn't always make sense. It surely doesn't always make us happy. But life is good. How can I say that? Because even is the very worst of situations, good can come. Life isn't about being happy and comfortable. Life is so much more than that. I've seen it in my own life and I've seen it in every tragic and horrific situation I've witnessed. Scattered throughout the suffering are stories that are nothing less than awe-inspiring. The eyes of the world are on Haiti right now. Our hearts are with the people there. And God only knows what can happen as a result.

*The photo above was taken on my trip to Haiti in 2003.

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