“Whatever.” I said, and picked up my phone.
I’m not even going to bother explaining myself anymore.
Scrolling through nothing really on my smart phone seemed to dull my frustration with Andrew.
A few days later some devastating news came over text. My heart sank. The baby we had been praying for died.
Overcome with grief, sadness and confusion, I was going to break down.
I picked up my phone and scrolled through more nothingness, ignoring the pain in my heart.
A few nights ago the kids weren’t falling asleep so we decided they would have to scream it out since the older ones were manipulating us.
“I can’t handle listening to them freaking out like this!” I snapped at my husband, then picked up my phone and scrolled through nothingness, drowning out the sound of their voices with the words of others.
Last night the grief, confusion and sadness started to flood over me again. Tears started to spill, I reached for the closest thing to me. My phone.
Then I heard pretty clearly “no, just put the phone down and feel what’s going on.”
I didn’t want to feel it. I would cry. Bawl. Be angry and confused with God. I would feel like I don’t understand. I would feel out of control.
In that moment, I did let myself feel. It hurt a lot. I poured everything out to God and to Andrew in one big messy pile.
It was through allowing myself to really experience the emotions of all the people I was breaking for that I actually went places in prayer for them.
I wasn’t hiding from the burden anymore. The pain was real, but God was really listening.
This morning as I worshiped and declared God’s goodness over some confusing circumstances in the lives of those we love, I was reminded that Jesus was moved with compassion for people.
The compassion he felt didn’t leave him where he was. It pushed him to love, touch, pray, comfort, heal and serve.
If we want to really make a difference in people’s lives, we have to be brave enough to feel what they feel, hurt when they hurt and cry when they cry.
It means not tuning out and numbing ourselves, but being fully present to say “I feel your pain. I don’t understand it, or have the answers, but I feel it, deeply and acutely, and I want to stand with you.”.
May you be brave enough to put down your phone, or whatever your desensitizer is, and feel what’s going on in people around you enough to love them where they are.
And may God use YOU to make a difference.