It was Sunday. I had just finished lunch with friends after attending morning service. The latte I was slowly sipping from starbucks was really hitting the spot, and the sun was just barely starting to creep out over the gloomy overcast that previously dominated the early day’s sky.
As I waited on a friend to meet me I was reminded that I lived in a country that allowed me to open the Bible I had fitted inside the backpack I bring everywhere. (The backpack I got for my recent trip to Israel, which I will write about one day).
My worries, troubles, and anxiety over college classes, relationships, work, etc, all started to become less and less as I compared my life to others around the world. Who was I to be downtrodden over the way my life is going? I was about to sit in a coffee shop, sipping on my latte, and laugh with my friends in joy, over the most random things.
Now let me clear something up. Pain is relative. I understand that hurt, grief, and the lot, are not somehow able to be pre-determined, and placed into a scale in which we assess the reality of just how in pain someone really is, but take a look around today. How bad is your situation? Is it really that bad? Maybe it really is! But no matter the situation, I believe there is an answer for even the darkest of predicaments. Let us take a look at the following information in order to gain a better perspective on others, and the issues that surround them around OUR world.
According to UNICEF, 22,000 children die each day due to poverty. And they:
“die quietly in some of the poorest villages on earth, far removed from the scrutiny and the conscience of the world. Being meek and weak in life makes these dying multitudes even more invisible in death.”
“…invisible in death.” As if those who died, died in vain, with no one to care. As if there was absolutely no love available for those who were in the lowest, darkest, deepest of holes. Anyways… let us continue.
With information gathered from the world health organization they state that: “Suicide accounted for 1.4% of all deaths worldwide, making it the 15th leading cause of death in 2012.”
Does that not break your heart? People all over the world are taking their own lives, and at such a tremendous rate that over 800,000 people die due to suicide every year. 800,000 souls. 800,000 beautiful people. 800,000 potential mothers, daughters, fathers, sons, uncles, aunts, husband, wives, friends, family, and co-workers.
I refuse to believe that these people are just another statistic of the system; they are not just a part of a mental health dilemma or a child that was just not given enough to eat. They are lost, hurting, tormented souls who were LOVED, and they may have never known it.
Now, I sit here, looking out into this stormy night, as rain pours from the sky, and I am moved to tears as I think of the emotional turmoil that someone struggling with suicidal thoughts must be going through. I think of the child who will go to bed tonight, and not wake up in the morning due to the poverty they live in. Just because I do not have these same thoughts, urges, or live within the same confines, does not mean I cannot sympathize with them. If only there was some way to tell those who are in the pit of despair that they are loved…if only I could say something, do something, or guide them! If only I had something, or someone to introduce them to that could change their life forever!
Oh but wait… I do…
His name is Jesus to some, Jehovah to many, the King of King’s and the Lord of Lord’s to others. He is the Alpha, and the Omega. He is a God of love, mercy, hope, compassion and everything good! He has the power to heal the sick, open the eyes of the blind, tell the mute to speak, and to raise the dead from the grave.
I believe He can heal the heart that is shattered, and lift the body that is broken. There is no pit too deep, chasm too dark, situation too bleak, or nightmare too horrendous.
When He speaks the ground shakes, and with His word He cuts deep. There is no power in Hell that can overcome Yahweh, the great “I Am“. He has said that you are free to live a life uninhabited by fear (1 Timothy 1:7), worry, anxiety, shame, guilt, or any other lie of the enemy.
We are made NEW (2 Corinthians 5:17) once we give up our pain, and our worry to the Lord, who knows the number of hairs on our head (Luke 12:7).
If we accept Him as our one true Savior, He is ready, and willing to show us His unwavering, vast, unconditional, love. We do not have to live in the heartache, and hurt! The following verses reiterate the words I have offered.
“I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.” -Revelation 22:13
You are made new-
This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!-2 Corinthians 5:17
He is capable-
Listen! The LORD’s arm is not too weak to save you, nor is his ear too deaf to hear you call.- Isaiah 59:1
We should have no fear-
For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.-2 Timothy 1:7
So now I conclude with words to those of us who may be sitting in a coffee shop, sipping from a latte, and getting ready to meet friends with laughter in abundance…
…Who will you make a difference in from here on out?
People are hurting, and children are starving to death. Wonderful souls are taking their lives. We are all searching for someone who is different than the status quo. We need people to step out from amongst the crowd.
For us to believe that only those who live in other countries, or the obviously hurting individuals are the only ones hurting, then we are so very mistaken. The barista behind the bar, the best friend, your sister, homie, or even pastor could be hurting. The orphans, single parents, homeless, and even those who seem to have it all are the ones who deserve to be heard as well. The jocks, the cheerleaders, the nerds, the geeks, and even your enemies need you. They may not speak, but you can still listen to their pain if you’re attentive enough. Look in theirs eyes, pay attention, and never take a single moment for granted. Be a LIGHT in the darkness, and seek out those who are hurting. They will, no doubt, smile and say they are fine, but search deeper within, and be someone’s friend. It is our duty, as not only being a part of the human race, but also as Christians, to spread the good news of our heavenly Father. If you cannot speak to the poverty stricken, or find those deep in depression, then find those who need what you have to offer. Be kind. Be generous. Be happy. Be a friend. BE LOVE. MAKE A DIFFERENCE. Be light in a dark world.
The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.- John 1:5
You do not have to travel the world to find the broken; the broken are everywhere you go.
If we cannot show our faith to others, then maybe we do not have it…
In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.- James 2:17
If you are reading this, then know that you are so special, and beyond loved. You are not a mistake, or a problem, or lost from all hope. Hope is here…you just have to take a hold of it.
Remember those who are hurting. Seek out someone you can bless today. Show your faith in action; after all, it is a beautiful thing.
As always, much love.