This week has hit with a weight that feels tangible.
My muscles ache as I sit down, tightening, like my chest to remind me of what I already know, that the world is not okay. It is shattered and splinted into a million pieces like a china cup carelessly dropped.
I watch parents fighting, in my own home and across an ocean, against systems that seem rigged to better everyone but the child they are in place to protect. News outlets flash headlines about celebrity personalities and the ebb and flow of the stock market but sometimes, don’t you want to scream at the screen that what they are showing you isn’t the world because the world is right there, in your living room, splitting into a million pieces?
Pieces that are crumbling in your hands and while your crumble is different than my crumble, we all feel the ache of the breaking of the hearts around the world.
We watch children suffer at the hands of those who should protect them.
Employable workers receive a notice and then spend months trying to convince people that they are valuable.
Marriages battle against the cultural that pulls and lures with the instantaneous rather than the hard but holy love that builds life.
People cry out, unable to care for the children they have and others cry, begging God to give them a child.
There is brokenness everywhere, and some days, doesn’t it catch your breath and swell in your throat?
It weighs on my chest and pulls my heart into a knot as I breathe.
Every fiber of my aching body calls for me to retreat into myself. Sometimes, it even tempts me, as Satan did to our Lord, with promises of what God wants for me and a nudge to put myself before the holy work God has given me.
But brokenness, it will never be defeated by selfishness, but only through selflessness.
I can’t carry the burden of the world. I was never created to carry that load.
But the burden of my neighbor? That I can carry.I can’t carry the burden of the world. I was never created to carry that load. But the burden of my neighbor? That I can carry. Click To Tweet
I can carry the burden of meal-making. I can pick someone up and give them a ride. I can’t help every single mother find stability, but I can reach out to the ones I know with a pack of diapers and cup of coffee. I can’t solve world hunger, but I can feed those at my table and invite others to join us.
The brokenness of the world is never solved through the idea that we need to be more or do more, but with the words, Samuel uttered as a child, “Here I am, Lord.”
Here I am, in my own brokenness, ready to be used for others.
I don’t have food for the entirety of the world, but I can offer my food for the little portion of the world you’ve given me.
My work might not reach every child, but I can make sure that one is helped.
Brokenness has a way of stirring us, prompting our hearts to action. But that action is often met with overwhelming at how much is wrong and how feeble my efforts seem.
The grand problems of the world may be scary, but the grand problems of my neighborhood are not. I might be overwhelmed looking at all that is wrong in the world because there are no simple solutions. But when we look around us, there are simple acts of love that we can do in the name of Christ.
St. Thérèse said that we can do no big things, just little things with great love.We can do no big things, just little things with great love. This is how we bear the broknness of the world. Click To Tweet
Maybe that’s how we combat brokenness? Not by attacking the giant mess of a world we live in, but by picking up a piece of shatter china and matching the seam.
Consider him who endured from sinners such hostility against himself, so that you may not grow weary or fainthearted. – Hebrews 12:3, ESV
Keep the faith, and remember the one who did endure the weight of the world. We are not called to carry the burden of restoring all, but He did. And because of that, we have an assurance that He will equip us in the tasks He has laid before us.
So today, as you bear the weight of the broken, look around. You and I were never meant to solve all the problems of the world. But, by God’s grace, we can offer a glass of water to one who is thirsty. We can be the arms that embrace someone hurting. We can be the warrior who petitions before the throne of God.