Japan is and will always be my second home. I spent over 20 years living, working, and studying in Japan. My heart mourns for those villages and cities which bore the brunt of the tsunami. I still await word from those I know. Though most have indicated they are well, we all wait for those we know are still silent. Much time has been spent in prayer. The scars will take years to heal; for some, a lifetime.
I think of the orphaned children who left for school and now await at their school for loved ones whose fate we might never know. For many of these orphans, there remains a stigma in Japanese society for those considered "damaged goods". My prayers are that they might find loved ones, or at the very least, that loving families will step forward to shelter them as their own children.
I am sure that Japan will heal, but like most historical events, this will remain a turning point for the country.
I also praise the sacrifice of the firemen who rushed to close the tsunami gates manually after they were damaged. All the firemen were lost, but their sacrifice was with honor. As to is the sacrifice of the soldiers and plant workers who work relentlessly to repair the nuclear plant. As I watched the Japanese TV via the internet and heard these men's families recount their father or husband's dedication, one can only pray that they are successful in their efforts.
My prayers are for a nation to heal. Would that I were able to scoop up the hurt and the orphaned and hold them close and tell them that they are loved and that they can depend on me. Though I might be disabled these days, still I can offer love and support.
I owe much gratitude to the Japanese who welcomed me and allowed me to live and work with them for over 20 years. They are in my prayers.