We joke around with agencies’ staff, “The rebels wait for us to come, and then they make a move.” For me, sometimes joking and actually saying what I don’t want to happen helps relieve some of the tension, and I’m hoping that maybe it unleashes something of a reverse-jinx! It would be too much of a coincidence for them to create havoc exactly when we’re “in town” for a third time in a little over a year.
For our team, these news become something of a nuisance. We cannot do what we came to do as fast as we like to do it. The extra security measures steal valuable time, and time is lots of money out here! For the refugees and the population of Chad, the news of potential fighting around their homes is a lot more than a nuisance. It is the potential loss of life and property; it is having to worry about family and friends; it is possibly going without food for an indefinite time period; it is the crushing of hopes.
Thinking selfishly, we would want the rebels to wait for us to leave. Thinking with our brain and heart, we want there to be peace on both sides of this border. In these times, it seems that it takes a lot more courage to fight for peace than to fight with weapons.