My heart has been breaking a lot lately. It’s heavy with hurt for others, and it’s heavy with the state of the world in which we live. I feel as if God has lifted me up and given me a drone’s eye view of our world; the sight before me both breaks my heart and gives me hope.
I see a world that has been torn apart by sin. I see a world that is so full of self that we don’t even see our fellow human, let alone God. I see a world in which people tear one another apart for the pure pleasure of it. A troll used to be a cute little figurine with funny hair we played with as kids. Now, trolls fill the internet seeking out people to destroy with their words.
I see people who have been devastated by nature’s wrath, lives needlessly lost, and lives selfishly and sinfully taken. I see people who murder for pleasure, and others murder with their words as they slice into the hearts of their friends and enemies alike.
There is so much needless pain in the world and my heart breaks for those who are hurting.
Romans 1:25 (NLT) reads, “They traded the truth about God for a lie. So they worshiped and served the things God created instead of the Creator himself, who is worthy of eternal praise! Amen.”
This verse wrecks me. I think it’s one of the saddest verses in all of Scripture. I’m so impacted by this verse because that’s the world I see today. I see a world who knows the truth about God, but trades truth for lies; a world full of people who are too busy worshiping created things to notice their Creator.
Do you have that sinking feeling in your gut too? Do you find it hard to catch your breath? I’m not done yet.
The view I see also gives me hope. I see neighbor helping a neighbor, and strangers not batting an eye as they rescue someone in need. I see people pulling together to rebuild and recover. I see people taking their eyes off of themselves and their own need long enough to look another human being in the eye.
I see people crying on each other’s shoulders and giving a friend their last bottle of water. I see people standing for the truth, even when it means they will suffer. I see the persecuted church praising God and proclaiming their allegiance to Him to the very end. I see individuals who are sold out for the Lord, whatever the cost. Oh, how great will their reward be in Heaven!
The truth is, as bad as things seem now, they are going to get a lot worse before Jesus comes back. God even gives us a list of things to expect in Matthew 24; we’re just getting started.
So what do we do? Especially as people who live with chronic illnesses, how can we help make our world a better place? We can’t go to Puerto Rico and help with relief efforts. We can’t go to Las Vegas to minister to those whose lives have been forever changed. Most of us are so financially strapped we can’t even donate money.
But you know what we can do? We can do the most powerful thing there is to do on this earth. We can do the will of God. 1 Thessalonians 5:17-18 tells us to, “Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.”
We can pray. Friends, prayer is such a powerful tool and it’s one we don’t use often enough. 2 Chronicles 7:14 says, “Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land.”
But Josie, I don’t know what to pray! That’s a valid point. It’s hard to know what to pray but thankfully, God left us a book of instructions. I find that the Psalms are a fantastic place to start. You can’t go wrong when you’re praying the Word of God!
The second half of 1 Thessalonians 5:17-18 tells us that we are to be thankful in all circumstances. That’s another thing we can do, though it’s only possible in Christ. We’ve been talking about our unity with Christ and this is where the rubber meets the road. The things God asks us to do are impossible in our own strength, but in Christ anything is possible, even praising God and being thankful in these desperate times.
Friends, let’s put the judgment away and love one another. Let’s be thankful in all circumstances, and let us come together in spirit and pray. As you listen to the words of the song below, make it the cry of your heart as you call out to God. Oh Jesus, how we need You!
“Jesus looked at them intently and said, ‘Humanly speaking, it is impossible.
But with God everything is possible.’” ~Matthew 19:26