We are about halfway through the month . . . and, as far as I can tell, about a third of the way toward reaching our goal of $1500 for “Lifted by Love”. This is when I start to pray . . . a lot. I am afraid of letting down our friend. I know that she is counting on this money. But, even more, it seems she is counting on receiving the love from the Body of Christ that she has been missing. Like so many others who are in her shoes or have been through her shoes, “Lifted” was not supported by her church family. Her ex has money. And clout. And equally moneyed and clouty parents who are prominent members of her former church. Our friend, Lifted, has been suppressed for such a long time that she did not develop any sort of fame in circles. She carried on through life . . . trying not to upset her husband. Tiptoeing around the eggshells in her home . . . expending all her energy in protecting her children and begging her husband for counseling.
When the ‘c’hurch lets you down . . . and you are trudging through trauma and tragedy, you are at risk of forgetting that Jesus cares very much about where you are.
I remember how I felt. My faith was hanging by a thread. I tried to go to other churches. Sometimes it was OK and other times it was not. I had been unloved for so so long. And I had been receiving letters from ‘c’hurch members who told me that I was wrong to leave an abusive husband . . . or that they did not believe me (he was charming and talented). They told me I was disrespectful . . . they told me that they were doubting my salvation. They even told me that God is no longer with me. In those moments, God always saved my faith, again and again. Sometimes, it was simply an act of kindness from someone who went out of their way to do something small for me. Other times, it was Scripture. I never gave up on what God says. I held onto truth . . . even if it seemed like so many around me did not believe that I walked with the Lord. I could not accept that.
I want desperately to give Lifted the sense that we . . . we who know her story and know her . . . will do something for her to remind her that God cares very deeply for her. That He will not leave her destitute.
Crying now, as I write this. Remembering . . .
At the same time, I know that I am not really the One in charge of this at all. That I take too much on my shoulders. So, I please with Jesus on Lifted’s behalf. I believe that God is moved by our genuine pleas. And that He is just as touched by my tears as I am my little child’s. Pray with me for Lifted. Let our cries reach His ears.