It takes boldness to pray Jesus break our hearts for what breaks yours, but maybe that’s what Christ’s followers are called to do.
Throughout the years I taught at the elementary school level, I set aside a time to read aloud to my class. Every year, except the one I taught in a portable, the class gathered in a specific area of the room for our read aloud time.
I read a variety of books to the class. Historical fiction. Mythology. Biography. Fantasy. Poetry. Non-fiction. Realistic fiction. Narrative non-fiction. Fables. Folk Tales. Tall Tales. Mystery. Riddles and Jokes. The year I read The House at Pooh Corner I asked Pilot to come in and read the last chapter while I sat at my desk and cried.
After one student asked if he should bring the box of tissues to our read aloud area, I knew we should keep a box readily available to pass through the circle in case the tissues were needed. Especially by me.
One year the required reading was Charlotte’s Web. Another year it was The Stone Fox. Tearjerkers for sure.
Sad books weren’t all we read. There were Junie B. Jones books. Bunnicula books. Magic Tree House books, and a whole lot more.
So what’s all this have to do with anything, you might ask. Good question.
Just as I read various books, some of which brought me to tears, I believe Jesus brings various life events and people into our lives, some of which should bring us to tears.
I believe Jesus wants us to feel one another’s pain so intensely that, as Steve Camp says, we can taste the salt in the tears they cry.
I believe Jesus wants his followers to be so moved to compassion for others we do more than simply say, I’ll pray for you. I believe Christ expects us to put our words into action.
We aren’t all poetry, or mystery, or historical fiction. We aren’t all biography, hard science, or fables. We each have unique stories to tell which make us who we are.
Likewise, depending on what moves us and how God created us, we respond to others’ stories in different ways.
And that’s a good thing, don’t you think?
More than likely the way I respond to others’ needs and do ministry in my life is different than the way you respond and do ministry. Doesn’t matter.
What matters, I believe, is each of us allows Jesus to break our hearts for the things that break his to the point we go beyond saying, I hope you keep warm and stay fed, to actually clothing and feeding.
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If a fellow man or woman has no clothes to wear and nothing to eat, and one of you say, “Good luck to you I hope you’ll keep warm and find enough to eat”, and yet give them nothing to meet their physical needs, what on earth is the good of that? Yet that is exactly what a bare faith without a corresponding life is like—useless and dead. James 2:15-16 (Phillips)
You can find my November Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.
I wish you well.
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