Aug 21 2013

Who is in your reach?

When news broke yesterday afternoon that shots had been fired at an Atlanta area elementary school, families immediately braced for the worst. Thankfully that’s not how it turned out. No one was shot. No one was hurt. And the young man who fired multiple rounds at police officers is now in custody. The schools bookkeeper, Antoinette Tuff, is being called a hero for talking the young man into surrendiring himself. She shared some of her own hard times, she told him she loved him, and she prayed for him. As they talked he told her he had no reason to live because nobody had ever loved him.


What he did was absolutely wrong and horrible and scary but in that one simple statement my heart hurt for him. His mom passed away when he was young and somehow he slipped between the cracks. If you’re like me you hear stories like this and think “didn’t anyone around him notice he needed a friend?” "Didn’t anyone try to get him help before it got this serious?!" But then something interrupts my thoughts…who is in my own neighborhood, my own reach, that I could extend an arm to but don’t take the time to notice? Who is someone around me that just needs someone to believe in them? Makes me want to look a little more closely at the people God puts in my path everyday. You never know when your time, your encouraging words, your listening ears could be just the reminder someone needs. The reminder they are wanted, they are worthy, and they are loved.

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Aug 08 2013

Ever just want to be carried?

Sometimes it takes everything in you to take another step. 

 

I was in the seemingly never ending airport security line having my own mild meltdown when a little girl behind me seemed to understand my pain. The difference was she could throw herself on the ground-I couldn’t! I was in tears about leaving my family and friends and the concern of being forgotten. She was in tears because she was tired. Both valid reasons to cry. Underneath  bright blue cokebottle glasses were tears just streaming down her face. She couldn’t have been more than 7 years old. She was done waiting in the long line. In a very loud voice, just before she throws herself on the floor she says to her mom ‘If you make me take one more step I am going to fall right here and you’ll leave me here forever.’ Her mom calmly replies “honey, I am right here with you. I am not going to leave you, but you have to walk yourself.”

Seems simple enough. But in the middle of my own meltdown, it was poignant.

Sometimes we have to keep on walking. Even though we’re tired-even though our loads feel heavy and we would rather be carried than have to take one more step-but we’re not walking it alone. And instead of picking us up, God lets us walk through it so it so we can grow…but He walks beside us every step of the way. 

 

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9 

 

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