The Sick, the Broken, the Forgotten

People everywhere are in desperate need of hope. They are wandering around searching for someone to care. Will you be the one to see it? Will you begin to show them that they are loved and seen?

There are so many times that I feel the weight of these needs is going to come crashing in on me. Like the next breath I take will bring them toppling to the ground. I need to stop thinking other people’s lives or happiness depend on me. I can’t heal anyone. I can’t give them a job or a friend or take away sadness. That isn’t my job.

What is my job? I am to do everything I can to show them love. I should open my hands to help them. Babysit their kids, have coffee and let them talk, or physically give them what they need.

My eyes should always be open and alert to those in need. Often it isn’t the ones shouting the loudest, but rather the quiet ones you don’t think twice about. I should train myself to spot pain and figure out what that person needs. I may not have money to give, but I have ears to hear and lips to speak truth and arms to hug. If I can take care of the emotional needs, they may have the strength to face the rest of their life.

If we aren’t looking past our own lives and seeing others’ pain, why are we here? What possible purpose can be greater than reaching out to help another person? There are so many people out there who have no hope and feel attacked. Or possibly worse, they feel invisible. They honestly think no one cares or loves them. What do we do about this?

Well, we can keep going and ignoring deep pain. We can keep our noses buried in our phones and say, “Not my problem,” as we walk around them. We can look the other way. We can think of someone as a caricature and not a real person.

Or we could ask how we can help them. We can listen and nod and look at them. We can hear the heart beating inside them and help them find the purpose they so desperately seek. They are people who may have taken a wrong turn or have had something horrible done to them. Somewhere along the way, they have gotten off course and just need someone to pay attention to them. There is no training required. We don’t have to be experts. We just have to have a heart and eyes that are willing to see.

Will this be me? Will this be you?

Linking with Holley Gerth

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4 thoughts on “The Sick, the Broken, the Forgotten

  1. Two days ago I had an experience I will never forget. A ministry near where we live asked me to consult with them about raising more funds. In order to better understand what they do, I rode with the director for 90 minutes in the neighborhood where the ministry is located. We loaded up a van with two boxes filled with packages of cookies and crackers. As we drove through the narrow streets of the city, there were dozens of people on the streets or sitting on the porches of the small houses in which they live. Many people were wary of us (thinking we were police) but most recognized the director and came out to talk with him and get their snacks. The director always asked how they were first, like a doctor asking how we were feeling. Some answered with a flippant “fine” while more said that they were hungry or unable to find work. There were quite a few who told us that they needed to get into a drug treatment program. In all cases the director offered hope, prayed with them, and in many cases he took their name and phone number and made a promise to get them into an addiction treatment program.
    He always asked if there were children in their home and most times there were. The director would them invite them to the Saturday morning kids club at the center which is led by a ministry of local college students. The director told me that his highest priority is to reach the kids before they start making life decisions which will put them into a downward spiral of addiction.
    We ended up in a park which everyone in the area knows is the place to score drugs, a place where the police are afraid to patrol. But the director was welcomed by about 25 people. What did he offer? The cookies were only to help in their short term hunger. The thing he offered most was love in Jesus’ Name. The people on the streets know his reputation for compassion and his ability to help them with their deepest need.
    It was a deeply moving day, and we will be supporting this ministry with our time and funds.
    We all need to be Jesus to those whom our culture would call the “least of these.”
    Sarah, keep challenging us to love and good works in Jesus’ name.
    I love you,
    Dad

    1. What an amazing experience and organization. I hope to hear more stories of hope from them! That is how we must be-loving, seeing, guiding. Oh that we may all gain a reputation of compassion!

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