When It Hurts to Care
When I think about the sickening abuse of political power in our country and others, the undertow of race and sexism that continues to pull at the feet of millions yearning for equality, the babies who are being killed in the womb and the desperate mothers who let them go, sexual perversion that rots into poison a God-given blessing, the twisting of God’s Word into easy-to-swallow lies, blatant disrespect between generations, apathy in the Church, etc. and then look at the piddling little sum I have to offer by way of solution, I get discouraged. Not just down, but don’t-want-to-get-out-of-bed, pass-me-that-cupcake, binge-watch-til-I’m-numb level sad.
I mean, what if circumstances only get worse?
What if abusers keep abusing and never get punished?
What if the ignorant continue to judge?
What if this ship we’re on sinks because we’re all too busy saving our own selves to right it?
God will still be glorified—maybe not the way I’d like, via wide-spread transformation of sinners into saints so obvious and absolute even those who refuse to be rescued are forced to admit that God is good and the Gospel is true so things end up getting better for everyone—but God will be glorified.
If not here and now while those of us who belong to God can revel in the spiritual victory this side of Heaven, then someday, after time and opportunity for lost souls to repent have passed, whichever works best for the Father (Eph. 1:11, Phil. 2:9-11).
In the meantime, we deal. How?
Well, I’m learning the key to contentment right here, right now is in focusing not on what I have to offer, but on the miracles God can accomplish through a surrendered life and making a conscious effort to give Him mine, day in and day out.
I may never feel the kind of happy I long for this side of Heaven, but even this lack can be a blessing when viewed from the right perspective.
“…And if He rescued Lot, a righteous man, who was distressed by the filthy lives of lawless man (for that righteous man, living among them day after day, was tormented in his righteous soul by the lawless deeds he saw and heard)…then the Lord knows how to rescue godly men from trials…” (2 Pet. 2:7-8).
You see, friends, this ache in our hearts over the depravity of man and its byproducts is natural for those who walk with and by the Holy Spirit. It’s not an annoyance to be ignored, a distraction to be dulled, or a burden to be eased, but evidence that we belong to God, a blessed reminder of Whose we are and the perfection we have to look forward to when all is set right.
The empathic pain of God’s children is not a curse or punishment to be endured, but motivation to pray without ceasing, love others even when it hurts, rejoice when a lost soul is found, and celebrate when a wayward sibling returns home, a divine privilege that expires when this breath that is life blows past.