God’s Heart is Ministry
There is one prayer that I recall praying often during high school and I continue to today. It’s one that I was always vague about, but new it was necessary. It was asking God to break my heart for what breaks His. I didn’t know what I was asking for, I didn’t completely understand what it meant to ask God for such a thing. It’s similar to asking Him for patience or faith…when you ask for things as intense as those, you gain more than patience or faith, you gain life experience. The same is true when it comes to asking for God wreck us. He shows you things you never knew you would need to learn.
As Christians, we are called to love others. It’s in the lyrics of several worship and contemporary christian songs. It’s written all over God’s Word. Jesus evens says that the greatest command is for us to love others! (Mark 12:28-34). It’s imprinted deeply on our hearts.
My first experience where I specifically recall God breaking my heart was during my adventure to Honduras. Before going on this trip, I had a plan to stay close to “home” which right now is Ohio, close(ish) to my parents. I had no desire to live overseas, and was pretty set in my ways. That changed as soon as I breathed in the humid, Honduran air and saw the beauty of that broken country. Everywhere I looked, there were broken people. This is one way in which God’s heart breaks. It devastates him to see the less-fortunate suffer, but I think what ruins His heart more is when nothing is done about it.
As I played, laughed and loved on the girls in the orphanage, I felt God smiling. As I watched the women and children slapping mud onto their own hut they were building, and how the more-fortunate had a hand in this financially, I felt God smiling. My heart broke, or rather shattered, as I spent time with those incredible people, I felt God smiling. It was not one of those smug smiles that screams “I told you so.” He was simply smiling down on me because he knew something I didn’t: what was happening in my heart had not only been what I had been praying for, but it had been His heart all along. I can now no longer imagine myself having a career and family here in America, but instead can only see myself living in Honduras and living each day serving that country. That is God’s heart! I’m not saying this to hold myself up higher than others. I’m not saying God only works when we spend time loving others overseas. I’m saying that when we are in our element, God is there. When we are living out our calling. And lastly, as my brother once said, “Find a place where God is working, and go there.” There is bound to be incredible God things happening in a place where God is already working.
I’m not saying that everybody is called to do this, I certainly didn’t think I was. But I do want to say that each of us needs to be open and aware of God’s plans rather than our own. Some of us may want to go overseas when God is calling us to be here or in my case want to stay where we are but are being called elsewhere.
We live in a world of broken, sinning, dying, hungry, and confused people. But we also live in a world that is full of hope, opportunities, and most of all, Jesus. Every day gives us the hope that someone else might be reached. Every day gives us the opportunity to spread God’s love and share His heart with others. Every day gives us the chance to experience Jesus and grasp His heart more deeply.
This is just the beginning of a four part series. There are so many aspects to this prayer and I am continuing to learn more about it each day. I hope that you will join me in prayer for a broken heart. It’s painful and challenging, but most of all it’s worth it.