My head was thrashing. My body rebelling against itself. My brain ready to shatter trying to finish my school paper due that night.

And then my name was being called. A need at the gate.

What a funny life this is compared to home life in America.

Imagine. Maybe you are in the middle of a meeting. A good book. You are sick. Sleeping. Whatever it is – but you are still constantly accessible to the outside world. Sometimes, this is difficult, but it of course is beautiful all the same living in the middle of a community like we do.

But what a difference! In America we pull into our garages and close the door behind us. How many knocks do you get on your door a day?

So I slipped on my Birkenstocks, dragging my feet to the outside gate, warned prior that it was a medical need. A boy with a few others waited for me with a ‘rock to the head’ wound (sadly one injury I have seen multiple times just this week at our gate). His head was wrapped tight in a scarf, and catching sight of him at first, I suppose less experienced pre-Brooke would have gasped, but I was ready to help this kiddo by the grace of God (especially because I had just gotten re-certified in first aid the day before at an organization down the road).

I took a deep breath, trying to exhale back out the selfishness that was trying to grip me.

And when I was feeling dramatic at the end of myself like a tired two year old, God gave me a little nudge almost as if like… “yeah, I need you to get over yourself for a second because this one before you…yeah, the one who I love? He needs you right now.”

I am not sure if that is really how God would talk to me – but I imagine so.

So I took a breath, gathered up more supplies than I could carry in one trip and plopped this little guy on my lap. I asked him questions as I began scrubbing the dried blood off from his head, completely unsure of how no tears were falling from his sad little eyes. “You didn’t cry when this happened?” The man that brought him (father-of-the-rock-thrower, if you will) confirmed, “he didn’t cry”.

“ou gen fos!”. “You are strong!” I muttered over and over again, amazed, as his wound bubbled up from the hydrogen peroxide, hardly making a peep as I cleaned up his head, neck and ear. Finishing up, I wrapped that little guys head up like a mummy and sent him on his way, hoping he would come back the next morning.

As I sat in the chair under the almond tree after the boy and others left, I thought to myself. Maybe this is all God wanted to teach me today. I like the ways He always teaches me on love – such a simple topic.

Loving others does not have to be convenient; maybe, half the time it is even completely inopportune. And that is the exact moment that we should love all the harder – when our self-centeredness is ready to just, not. Our flesh does not get to pull us from loving others.