The children of Israel were in a horrible spot. They were being mistreated, facing injustice, and in bondage to the Egyptian government. These people cried out from the depth of their hearts: “God help us; don’t You see what’s happening to us?”
Have you cried out that way to the Lord?
God could have snapped His fingers and opened the borders. He could have created an army out of nothing. He could have sent angels to rescue His people. He could have answered in so many ways, but instead of an instant miracle answer, God goes into the desert and finds an old man who’s eighty years old and calls him to rescue His people!
The point is, God has heard the cry of His people—He has not ignored it. Even though the people have not seen the answer yet, God is already working out His answer to rescue them.
There is an important lesson for us in this story. Due to our inclinations for instant gratification—instant answers—we often think our prayers are falling on deaf ears. Instead of being persistent in prayer and having faith, we throw our arms up and say, “What’s the use!”
We need to understand that, as God’s children, He does instantly hear our prayers. He is fully aware of our situation and our heart’s cry. Sometimes His answer is yes, no, or wait.
God wants you and me to keep praying with a heart of faith. He will not withhold any good thing from His children, but He will do what is in our best interest, and sometimes that is not what we think is best. We need to have faith that God will do what is best for us—whatever that may be.
When you sacrifice for what you love, you gain more of what you love
THE LOVE OF A BROKEN HEART
Love is a risk that’s never a risk
To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything, and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly be broken. ~ C. S. Lewis
“I’ve got more than sixty years of evidence that every day looks better waiting for heaven.”
What if you break open your one heart and risk pouring out your one life in givenness and you aren’t received as being enough to actually be loved back?
What if you take your one life and risk living given — and in the end you feel empty because no one saw you as worthy of being given love?
Who hasn’t read that haunted grief in an old woman’s eyes? Who wants to risk going down to the grave like this?
One thing I never spoke to you about, among a million other unspoken word, as I was growing up there was only I and my older sister who was 8 years older than me. I remember she always played the organ for the church, but my parents never took me to church and they didn’t go either. I never thought much about it because I was only seven during that time. They never opened a Bible at home or read me scripture, in fact I didn’t know God existed.
When I was fifteen we started going to Church every time the doors opened. I always felt comfortable and safe there. Then at the age of sixteen I gave my life to the Lord. I remember the effectual call to this day. After that they never went back and at the time I could not drive. So I was left without any guidance on how to live for the Lord. Now I often look back and wonder why that happened.
But you know the Lord has never left me for one second of my life. I cant count the number of times he has rescued me from harm.
What if you risk breaking open your own vulnerable need, risk exposing your own broken places needing to be touched by love — and your brokenness is left exposed and unfulfilled?
The abundant life is a vulnerable communion. This is what I want — but how do you build a life like that?
The canvas of the crucified Christ hangs up over the table. This vulnerable communion is a risk. Givenness is a risk. The only way to abundant life is the broken way of risk.
But— You are whatever you love. You are, at your very essence, not what you think, but what you love. Open up God’s love letter to us — He says we’re all lovers compelled by our loves. We are all compelled not by what we believe is right, but by what we love the most. You are not driven by duties, you are not driven by doctrines; you are driven by what you ultimately desire — and maybe you don’t actually really love whatever you think you love?
And the saddest of all may be when we give away our lives to insignificant things, things we didn’t realize we subconsciously loved. Turns out — we give our lives to things we never would if we got honest and thought about them for one single moment. It’s happening every moment — our unintentional, accidental lives betray our true loves and what we subconsciously believe.
The cross above is asking me, forming me cruciform, forming me into what I say I love. This is no small thing. Because nobody’s ideals form them like their loves form them.
Why love the wrong things in the wrong ways? Our ideals never compel like our loves. The only way to the abundant life is to love the right things in the right ways.
And I looked down at that little penned cross, drawing me, that’s daring me to daily take the risk to be broken and given~ I know our loves are formed by our daily habits. Our loves are formed by our daily liturgies.
We are made into what we make habits. Is it ever a sacrifice to give your love to whom you love more?
Sacrifice isn’t so much about losing what you love, but giving your love on to whom you love more. When you sacrifice for what you love, you gain more of what you love.
Love is a risk~ that’s never a risk
Do we give up what makes us really happy, whatever we are good at, a lifetime of happiness, to risk our lives on a relationship that might never make us happy? Do we sacrifice what makes us really happy day in and day out — for a relationship that has the potential to make us unhappy?”
You can sacrifice your time, career, sanity, joy for a child, a spouse, a friend, and they might end up forever walking out some door on you, spitting on your reputation, your investment, your efforts, shredding your heart and never looking back. And you can’t get back the time and the lifeblood you gave away.
“There are no guarantees with people.”
And before I could think, the words had left my mouth. “Jesus said,
‘Whoever loses their life for Me will find it.’ — Matthew 16:25
Jesus risked Himself on me. How can I not risk my life on you? You may not love me back. You may humble me, humiliate me, reject me, shatter my heart, and drive the shards into my soul—but this is not the part that matters. What matters most is always the most vulnerable communion. Comunion is always, always the miracle. What matters is that in the act of loving we become more like the givenness of Love Himself. What matters most is not if our love makes other people change, but that in loving, we change. What matters is that in the sacrificing to love someone, we become more like Someone. Regardless of anything or anyone else changing, the success of loving is in how we change because we kept on loving.
Who knew that sometimes if you don’t risk anything — you’re actually risking everything?
Love is always worth the risk because the reward of loving is in the joy of loving itself. Love is a risk that’s never a risk. Loving is itself the greatest outcome because loving makes one more beautiful, more like brokenhearted Beauty Himself. The risk of a vulnerable communion always leaves you tasting the grace of Christ.
No matter what the outcome looks like, if your love has poured out, your life will be successful.
I am what I love and I will love you like Jesus, because of Jesus, through the strength of Jesus. I will love when I’m not loved back. I will love when I’m hurt and disappointed and betrayed and inconvenienced and rejected. I simply will love, no expectations, no conditions, no demands. Love is not always agreement with someone, but it is always sacrifice for someone.
Not one thing in your life is more important than figuring out how to live in the face of unspoken pain.