I have felt so helpless lately. It started a while ago seeing images of precious people living on nothing just trying to get by.
It came roaring at me two weeks ago with the earthquake in Haiti. The images of poverty stricken, broken people floated before my eyes. I didn’t close the websites or stop reading the Tweets because I wanted to look.
Last Sunday at church God literally wrecked me. Our pastor decided to forgo communion after the teaching and allow people to pray for Haiti while worship was led. We watched this video done by Pastors Mark Driscoll & James McDonald who went to Haiti to help churches just days after the earthquake. Within seconds of the video starting I was crying. I hadn’t cried for Haiti yet. All I could do the rest of the service was cry and plead to God to save: spiritually and physically.
It isn’t just Haiti though. It’s all children and families that are in devastating poverty. That is what breaks my heart. I want to argue with God and ask Him why are you allowing this to happen to your creation. Why are you allowing the flesh and blood you wove together to be eaten away by diseases and malnutrition?
Today Shawn showed me pictures that Tony Morgan Tweeted from his trip to Burkina Faso through Compassion. All I wanted to do besides cry for these children, was bring them into my home and take care of them. Love them.
I know it isn’t an accident that God has placed these feelings in my heart. I’ve pleaded with Him over and over to break my heart for the things that break His. This is an answer to prayer. Yet, I still feel so helpless. We sponsor our precious, beautiful little Nikita in India and fully plan on sponsoring more in the future. Yet, I still feel so helpless. I pray. We donate to Haiti, and yet… I feel like there is so much more I could do and don’t know how or what.
I just want to be open to what He has for Shawn and I. I guess my feeling helpless means I just lean on Him all that much more and He’ll be the work in me that moves my hands the way they need to be moved.
In the light of tragedies we always seem to understand just how blessed we are by God. My heart has been exceptionally thankful lately. Last night we had a tremendous storm here in Phoenix. We got an inch of rain over night. As I got ready for bed I listened to the downpour that was occurring and could only thank God that I have a house with four walls and roof that doesn’t leak. I wasn’t out on the street trying to find a semi dry, warm place to sleep. I was about to crawl into my dry comfy bed with four layers of blankets. I haven’t lost everything that was really nothing to begin with. We are blessed.
Take away the superficial stuff your thankful for. When you get down to the nitty gritty what does your heart cry out to God in praises of thanksgiving?
Here are some of mine:
1. My salvation and the undeserved grace and mercy God has given me.
2. I have a home. Thousands don’t have a place to sleep at night except a dirty corner in the street (if they’re lucky).
3. I have a job. Again many don’t. I’ve been blessed with a job I really like. My co-workers can drive me batty but that’s part of having a job.
4. My husband. After nearly nine years (in May) of marriage my husband loves my more than he did nine years ago. With all my faults, my car accidents, my yelling at him it is apparent he’s fallen more in love with me and I with him.
Psalm 138:1 – 3 (NLT)
I give you thanks, O Lord , with all my heart;
I will sing your praises before the gods.
I bow before your holy Temple as I worship.
I praise your name for your unfailing love and faithfulness;
for your promises are backed
by all the honor of your name.
As soon as I pray, you answer me;
you encourage me by giving me strength.
When I logged onto my computer at work this morning I read this headline for this story on the BBC feed I use Haiti Quake Toll May Be 200,000. My heart just breaks. It cries out for God’s mercy.
Last night I was praying for our little girl Nikita in India, and the people in Haiti. Both India and Haiti are amongst the poorest in the world. Haiti being the poorest in the Western Hemisphere, and India having the largest concentration of poor in the world. This utterly breaks my heart. I began asking God to save and come quickly. I am becoming more and more aware of the effects of sin on our world and our own selves. In Genesis 3 man fell from the grace of God. Sin entered the world and all that was in it and on it became cursed. I long for the day with great anticipation when Jesus returns. When sin and it’s effects are no more.
In the mean time all we can do is serve God, which includes others; and pray and give. As I said in my last post I do not wish that you would give lightheartedly. To treat it as the easy way out. The truth of the matter is these people need Jesus more than they need money. It seems like a harsh thing to say, but I’d rather die homeless in a gutter and have been saved by Jesus, then to die in a mansion and never know Him.
If God leads you to give then do it. Don’t hesitate. And pray, unceasingly. My husband and I gave through Compassion Intl. You can donate by clicking the Help Haiti image below.
For whatever you do thank you.
A few thoughts on my prayer to live more missionally this year.
Probably about two years ago Shawn and I started learning about Missiology and living missionally. It was a new concept for the both of us. In a nut shell, missional living means you live as a missionary to the community you live and work in. No longer did being a missionary mean you moved to Africa (or another third world country). Needless to say I’m still learning.
My biggest obstacle is really myself. 1. obviously getting rid of my pride, but also 2. the personality that God made me with. I am an extremely introverted person. Going up and talking to people – even those I know – is extremely difficult. So engaging strangers who need to be loved on in conversations about life is rather difficult.
I’ve started praying in this way about this:
Lord, you created me and designed me including my personality and the introvertedness. You wrote these into my DNA knowing that today I would be challenged to reach out and love and engage people. Please show me how to do this despite what I view as hurdles.
It’s pretty much the only thing I know to say. All I know is God has sent me to love people He loves, He will enable me to do it.
If you struggle with being introverted and engaging people how do you overcome your fears? I’d love any insights and of course prayers.
Missio Vitam – Latin for Sent Life
Prudence is a 30-something writer who lives in Arizona with her husband Shawn and their chihuahuas Lengua and Zeus. She writes her life, her experiences and her crawl back to hope. Eventually, she hopes to visit India – a place that’s captured her heart without ever stepping foot on the soil.