A Growing Soul

Another lazy Sunday afternoon in the fall finds me camped out on the couch with a belly full of appetizers watching a football game. With the kids quietly playing up in their room and my honey do list complete, all is right with my world. This contentment is short-lived when flipping through the channels during halftime the remote dies. While contemplating whether to get up and manually switch back to the big game a service announcement for a non-profit organization that helps starving children in Africa starts to play.

A range of emotions comes over me. I feel guilty for wanting to ignore their plight because I am more concerned over the Redskins mounting a comeback. Yet, there is part of me that feels a sense of sadness over the injustices taking place all over the world. Even though we know there are huge problems in the world, we believe there is nothing we can do to make any difference. After all, we are just one person.

It is hard not to feel completely overwhelmed when you hear stories about oppression, war and poverty. Our hearts break realizing the amount of work that needs to be done in this world.  Without the Gospel, despair runs rampant. Yet, when our heart breaks with the compassion of our God seen in the Gospel, our soul expands to match this growing concern.

Unfortunately, many of us take the easy route by devoting a large portion of our energy towards taking care of ourselves. With an individualistic mindset, our greatest concern will always remains inward. Just as long as our personal kingdom does not crumble, we ignore the fact that there is chaos taking place down the street and around the globe. This reveals a darker part of us all. The truth is we are willing to tolerate these horrors as long as they remain down the street and do not affect us.

Sadly, we dont understand the devastating effect this causes to our heart. Our soul shrinks or expands to the size of our greatest concern. We desperately need a growing soul so we are energized to pray for a growing concern taking place in a growing world. Over time you begin to develop a fundamental understanding that we are all connected to one another and we cannot afford, or survive, being obsessively concerned about ourselves.

The call is not for us to feel bad or wish we could do more. The charge is merely to do something and realize that God has equipped you with gifts and passions that He wants you to use to make His name known. Go and put your heart and soul on the line before God by asking: Lord, what would you have me do in light of my growing concern and expanding heart?

The Church that is built on Christ is the only organization on the face of the earth that has been entrusted with what every human heart longs for and in fact needs.  We must not shirk our responsibility and make excuses for why we are not more effective. The power lies in our ability to follow Christ and demonstrate this by our love for one another. It requires trusting God will be faithful to lead us and put us in places where we will be useful to fulfilling those purposes.

  • It has been said that our soul shrinks or expands to the size of our greatest concern. How have you seen this statement to be true in your own life?
  • In what areas do you see your soul expanding recently? What has caused your heart to gravitate towards this concern?

Are you looking for a way to keep your word in front of you all year long? Register for a My One Word account! One of the key features of a MOW account is an online Word Journal that allows you to capture your thoughts to reflective questions like you see above. You can go back at any time to read your completed journals to see how God has been moving in your life through your word in 2010.  If you already have an account, the questions from this blog have been posted to your Word Journal log in to your account to start your Word Journal today!