For me ‘twas not the truth you taught,
To you so clear, to me so dim.
But when you came to me,
You brought a sense of Him.
And from your eyes He beckons me,
From your lips His love is shed,
'Til I lose sight of you and see
The Christ instead.
Through the years of serving others among marginalized communities throughout Perú, South America, there are a unusual combination of psychosomatic alterations that affect our journey. I remember those first few years of serving in this incredible place. The language, culture, diversity, and personal exchange of life experiences would shine as golden rays of light along the corridor of my personal path. Every single story impacted my thoughts and every single face that I encountered was a lesson learned. The molding of my character was transformed merely by the reality of our global family.
My entire worldview was changed from a narrow-minded, self-centered, and middle-class brat, to the outward reality that others suffered from lack of medical care, education, food, water, and shelter. True poverty was shoved into the very pores of my every breath. There were mornings that I would wake up with soot on my face from the pollution that plagued the central part of Lima. The smog that hovered around the Central city was toxic. To breath in 24 hours of this horrific air was the equivalent to smoking 3 packs of cigarettes daily.
Years passed. Poverty continued. The cries of others wailed into the core of my ear canals. The homeless children continued to huff plastic PVC pipe glue and would rise up out of the steaming sewers of the underworld of Lima.
Slowly, ever so slowly, my compassion chipped away by a brutal force of consistently bashing waves. The harsh daily realities of watching children pick through rubbish to find food while next to them, were dogs doing the very same thing began to become a reality of my vision. Sickness, diseases, lack of food, and death started to become not so potent of an aroma that reached my senses. Naturally, my desire to help continued, however, the full fueled passion that burned within my soul to eradicate the global pain began to simmer.
It is one of those ever so dwindling events that occur in the journey of an individual. The erosion of the internal soul where the heart becomes hardened and cold. Its certainly nothing to be proud of and in many circles of our professional environments, it can be considered "burnout," which drags a stigma attached.
Naturally there were pockets of lessons learned that continued to teach me iresistable life long realities that would forever be etched as scars across my heart. The loss of individuals through STD infections that could have easily been cured or the death of close friends through the horrific violence of gangs and drugs. Flashbulb memories cause brief moments of pain that screech across the forefront of my mind.
Horrific images that forever singe memories into my soul.
Souls that have left a legacy through their incredible charisma for life.
During the past few weeks, an unusual and quite peculiar incident occurred while I was talking with individuals and families throughout the far reached areas of Perú. Do you know those events that occur that frankly take you by great surprise and wonder. During the first few years of experiencing the journey here in Perú, frequent travel through incredibly diverse regions was regular. I had beautiful experiences engaging in the local communities and living in remote locations. It was life changing and the calling of my entire purpose of life was met in those very precious places deep within the profound recesses of the human existence. I remember the very day, deep in the jungle region of Tingo Maria, that I felt, I had come home. Purpose is when you find your spot. I had found mine.
The other day, on a remote floating island at approximately 14,000 feet above sea level, the call returned. Or rather, I heard the ringing of the call once again. It came quite slowly, yet so surely and the call floated across my skin and I knew once again why I had begun so many years ago. It was through the gentle words of exchanging experiences of the journey that sent my mind, soul, and heart reeling back through flashbulb memories of why I found my journey home in this path.
As always in the past and once again this day, the call comes in the most calm and simple way. Its a call that rises from within yet is spoken from a distance. Often one does not understand the call, nor does the world in which he or she lives in, yet the call remains forever resilient. It echos across distance of ocean, time of years, and depth of soul. The call forever reigns its truth into the heart of humanity.
Some respond and pick up the distinct summon while others ignore. However, as one of my friends always told me, " they can ignore, but never can they say that they never knew."
The most precious inclusion of actually responding and yielding to the purpose of the call is in the humble realization that it is never about what we are doing, rather its about who we are serving. When one truly gets that truth at the very core of their very soul, then the call finds its destiny within our very heart and we truly become those peacemakers that engage in eradicating poverty and violence from our global community. Within that, somehow, we no longer worry about what others think about us, nor do we adhere to their judgemental pointed fingers, rather, we focus on the call and the One that sent it from its very beginning.
We don't lose, although so many may think we have, rather, those that we've served, experience the sense of winning.
We lose our souls within the ebb and flow of the ongoing call to leave what we were called to leave.
The future's destiny.
Daniel M. Klopp
Advocate 4 Marginalized individuals & communities globally
Advocate & Journalist
Die Daily to Self
Legacy to leave.