Thursday, July 22, 2010

A Breaking Heart

So, I had told you all that I would be writing updates on here about the trip to Haiti. The only times we were able to connect to the internet down there was to write home to let our families know that we were safe and okay. That is why I was not able to update you all while we were in Haiti.

Even as I am back in America, I have put off writing to you all. Before leaving Haiti, I was scared to come back to America. I knew the culture shock that had rocked my world last year when I returned back to the States from being among poverty... and I knew it would shake me again. Being in Haiti, I felt so far away ~ so far away from the "things" of America that suffocate my heart, from the extravagant richness of the American culture that sometimes just simply pains my soul. The deep poverty of Haiti caused me to feel so very far away from America. I breathe in the dust-filled, dirty air of the streets of Haiti and I breathe deeply... and I breathe freedom. It is something that is hard to explain, but it is a freedom that my heart now knows.

It is deeply painful to go to a third-world country. God took me out of the extravagance of America to show me a very poor country and I believe part of the reason for His doing so was to break my heart a little more for the things that break His heart. That was my prayer and I prayed it almost fearfully, knowing that the Lord answers the prayers of a sincere heart... and my prayer was sincere. Yes, my Father answered the prayers of His daughter's aching heart.

It has been painful... heart-wrenching at times. It is painful to see an old lady sitting alongside the busy streets of Haiti, frail and so thin it looks as if she hasn't eaten in weeks... and the reality that she probably hasn't. Or when I see the protruding stomachs of some of the children because they are so malnourished. Or when I see a baby taking a bath in a tub filled with dirty water, as another baby sits naked on the dirt next to him. Or when I meet people who are so content and so joyfully obedient to the Lord and then later realize that these very people are hungry... Reality hits hard. And it puts me to shame.

This, this is how the majority of the world lives. The extravagance of America is not the majority. How I ever got so blessed as to have a sturdy roof over my head, a car of my own, food always in my refrigerator, a variety of clothes to choose from, more than one pair of shoes for my feet, and a job that provides more than I need... I do not quite understand. Yet I said it in Haiti and I say it again ~ I do not want to just go away from this experience with the simple understanding that I am so very blessed. I cannot just come back to America, sit back and sigh with relief as all of my blessings sit around me and say, "Yes, thank You God." No. No, that is wrong. To come back with just that would be selfishness. My Father says, "'Depart from Me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you gave Me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave Me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not invite Me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe Me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after Me...I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for Me.'" (Matthew 25:41-43, 45)

At Vacation Bible School, I taught the children about Christ being their only sure Foundation. I was sharing about how God gave everything to us and He wants us to give everything to Him... and I could not share the next line of what I had planned to say. "Everything that we have was given to us by God." Yes, it is true... But I could not say it. It just did not seem right for me to say to these children... because I have more than I need. These children have next to nothing. How could I stand before them and teach them that God wants them to give over everything, when they have next to nothing? How could I stand before them, "rich" compared to them, and tell them that everything that they have was given to them by God? How could I teach them these things when they were the ones who should be teaching me?

And they did teach me. They taught me so much about life and what really matters. These people have next to nothing... some have nothing at all. And yet some of these people are the ones who are stepping up in the churches to lead the people in Christ. These are the ones who have big Dreams to accomplish much for the Kingdom of God, not knowing how the Lord is going to provide but knowing that He is.

It is startling to think that these "things" that I have are actually sometimes a hindrance to my walk with the Lord and accomplishing what He has asked of me. The chilling thought has occurred to me that perhaps the only things I should really have are those things which are resources for furthering God's Kingdom. All other things are only extravagances that can suffocate my heart and cause me to lose focus of the Purpose the Lord has set out for me. If the sole Purpose of my life is to serve the Lord, then I have need for nothing else than what the Lord provides to accomplish His purposes and further His Kingdom.

It is a lot to process. I am responsible for the things that I have seen and felt and experienced and I cannot take that lightly. I do not take that lightly. This passion in my soul is firing up once again. It is hard. I think God gave me more of a glimpse of what it is like for full-time missionaries overseas... the challenges, the heartaches, the exhaustion, the discouragements, the pain, and the joy of knowing that I was exactly where the Lord wanted me to be in that moment.

And that is exactly where I want to stay, all the days of my life. Right where the Lord wants me, wherever that may be. Father, help me with this. I need You to help me with this. Your strength is what sustains me. I have come to the conclusion that You truly are all that I need... sadly, not always all that I desire, but always all that I need. I thank You for that... and I thank You for breaking my heart for the things that break Your heart a little more.


Mom said...

I love you Molly! Your words ONCE AGAIN are such an encouragement to me and I am so richly Blessed to call you "daughter". I love you more than you will ever know! Thank you so much for sharing your heart...please don't ever stop writing what the Lord obviously is laying on your means so much!!! You are one of the Hugest encouragments in my life! I have said it before and I will say it again...God knew I needed you in my life...and to Him I am thankful for Blessing me with you!!!! I love you so much Molly!

Diana White said...

What can I are an inspiration to so many! Watching you grow up for the last few years through the little bit that I get to see at church and now getting to hear your thoughts like this has been inspiring! I know that you will give all of the credit to the Lord our God and rightfully so! Thank you so much for all that you are doing for His Kingdom! Thank you for the example that you are setting for children all over the world, and selfishly for me, my family and my children! I pray that God will bless you with with everything and anything that you "need" to stay in the center of His will! What an awesome place to be!!!
Thank you for sharing your heart and praise be to God for all that he is doing in you!