My heart aches this morning as I think about all that is so broken about our world, nation, cities, churches, families, and hearts. As I read the thoughts of people who think the way to prevent children from being unwanted is to violently kill them before they can realize they are unwanted. As I read of children living in squalor and cycles of trauma at the hands of governments. As I read of churches that close their eyes and turn their heads when witnessing abuse and oppression in their cities or within their walls. As I see people cover their eyes, their ears, their mouths when something just doesn’t add up or sit well with their spirits but they fear the implications for themselves if they speak truth to power, pressing that still small voice down with anything they can get a hold of and wrap their fingers around. As I read of sabers that rattle and weapons drawn, and men that puff up their chests and beat them to accentuate their war cries. Sometimes I feel like a stranger to this world, and other times its willing accomplice.
It all rolls in like a wave, quietly at first, then reaching crescendo as it breaks on the rocks and it swallows me up, and my broken heart and stirred senses recede into the open sea with the undertow. Pulled under, silenced, paralyzed by the impossible weight of it all. And it’s quiet again. And I put on my headphones and do my job, buy myself something to feel like I can make all things new with the click of a button, the ring of the bell, the opening of a package. I don’t know how to do it all; feel the weight of this broken place, and do just what I can to love mercy, do justly, walk humbly with my God. My heart condemns me because I may not adopt a child or three, because we have not gone out as missionaries yet, because I perceive the wrong and cannot be the savior.
And this is when I see that God has not made me the savior. But he has made me to know him, and until my dying breath I am able to pray, to speak, and to act in the precise capacity he has given at a given time. The one who tells the sea “here and no further” has hemmed me in behind and before and laid his hand upon me. The one who made my heart to break is the one whose heart was grieved to the point of death. The one who made me cry out to him “how long, oh Lord?” is the only one who brings justice and rises with healing in his wings. He did not put this in me for nothing, but it’s not so I could try to take his place as savior of the world. Lord, if one day I am too weak and weary to even lift a finger, may I be one who cries out with Habakkuk,
2 O LORD, how long shall I cry for help, and you will not hear? Or cry to you “Violence!” and you will not save?
3 Why do you make me see iniquity, and why do you idly look at wrong? Destruction and violence are before me; strife and contention arise.
4 So the law is paralyzed, and justice never goes forth. For the wicked surround the righteous; so justice goes forth perverted.
5 “Look among the nations, and see; wonder and be astounded.
For I am doing a work in your days that you would not believe if told. – Habakkuk 1:2-5