hurting tummies

Amidst the conversation and chatter, wrapping and eating, she spies the little boy huddled on a chair, clutching his stomach.  “What’s wrong?” she asks as she gently places her hand on his back.  He looks up in anguish, his face contorted in a grimace.  “My tummy hurts,” he says before curling back into a little ball.  She remembers back to a time when she was his age and what her father had told her in the same situation.  “Let’s pray to Jesus and ask him to take away the pain, alright?”

He nods weakly and she leads him a short prayer.  She then pats him on the back, “Hope you feel better soon.”  As she begins to walk away, she sees him jump up with renewed energy and watches him run to his mother.  “Mum, mum!  Amy just prayed for me and now my tummy doesn’t hurt!  Jesus healed me!”  She smiles and remembers that little girl who experience a miracle of healing, cementing her belief that the God of the Bible is real and that Jesus does care, even for someone as small and insignificant as herself.  She finds the little boy a few moments later and leads him in a prayer of thanksgiving.

——-

Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever.  And I love that He cares about the little things like hurting tummies.  And, I love how He can use us to share His love with the young and the old.

This night was for the university students but the night was also for that little boy.  I pray that he’ll never forget tonight.

♥ Ames

compassion and love

We’re really good at giving people compassion when they’ve earned it.  “Oh wow, that’s a terrible story!  Now I’ll show you love and kindness!” Why can’t we start there, as instructed by the One we say we follow?  Why does someone need to give us a horrible story before we go, “Oh, now it makes sense why you are that way...

– Dan Merchant, maker of Lord Save Us From Your Followers 

I’ll admit that I still tend to stereotype people when I meet them for the first time.  First impressions are sometimes hard to shake and it takes a deliberate effort to see past what is in front of my eyes to find the person underneath the physical features, different behaviours or habits or belief systems.  To show love and kindness to ALL is a challenge because it goes against the ‘self-focus’ message of our society: Why should I care for them?  They’ve done nothing for me, I don’t owe them courtesy or respect… they’ve got to earn it.

And what happens when we have shown love and kindness but get burnt in the process?  Do we say, ‘Goodbye and good riddance!’ or do we still continue to show love and kindness?

On our own strength and will-power, the latter is impossible and seems absurd to the world.  We feel a sense of justification to withhold our love and affection from people who, in our minds, don’t deserve it.  But that’s where the God dimension comes into play except that in our case, no matter what we’ve tried to do to earn God’s love, we could never measure up.  My efforts to live a good life would never get me to the stage where I could ‘deserve’ His love.  All I can do is just come back to that realisation and then rejoice that He has shown me love and kindness regardless of how I’ve related to Him in the past, present or future.

So perhaps that’s the place to start.  Love others the way God loves us.  If a perfect God could love imperfect people, who are we to judge or hold back compassion and love from those that God loves as well.

Food for thought.

♥ Ames