the whole world

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

"May God break my heart so completely that the whole world falls in." -Mother Teresa

My heart has been burning with this prayer over the past few weeks, but it is not a prayer that I utter lightly. In fact, I find myself trembling at the very thought.

How can I ask for the whole world when I am only at the very beginning of truly learning to love those around me?
When I was younger, I would have said that the whole world was easy to love, because the whole world (for me) was made up of those who were innocent and who quickly elicited my sympathy. The whole world looked something like the perfect little 11 month old baby girl, who came into our lives and showered us with her many blessing.

The whole world started, for me, with those who are innocent and easy to love.
Later, the whole world became more complicated as the evidences of trauma hit our hearts. We realized that sometimes the whole world looked like anger as the result of abuse. This was not 'easy-to-love innocence in the face of difficulty' and I often chaffed against this world. It was hard to let this world fall into my heart. But our Jesus...He has been so faithful to show me that this world is encompassed in His huge, compassionate heart, and He wants it to be fully embedded in mine. It is an immense privilege to learn to love the truly broken with Him.

I am beginning to see that the whole world includes those who have been deeply harmed and have not yet found healing in Him.

 But there is more that is coming.

Off in the distance, I can see another part of the whole world and it scares me.

I see that the whole world includes the two tattooed men who are yelling obscenities and punching each other right outside our window. The whole world is also the mother in Ind*a who breaks the neck of her newborn baby, because that baby is a girl. The whole world is the orphanage director in eastern Europe who sells the young girls in her care to a pimp when they are close to aging-out. The whole world is the couple in the US who sues a doctor for the "wrongful birth" of their beautiful baby, because he is born with down syndrome. The whole world even includes the father who sexually abuses his daughter for years.

The whole world is not only the oppressed, it is the oppressor.

And though our Father's heart can encompass the abuser, I do not even begin to understand how I can let the enemy into my heart.

How can I ask for the whole world?

I can ask because more than anything, I want to have the heart of our Father. I can ask because even though I cannot, in my own power, let these people into my heart, God can give me a new heart...a heart of flesh and not a heart of stone.

It may take time, but I know that as I pray Mother Teresa's beautiful/terrible prayer, He will answer.
He will grant me the impossible:

My heart will break,
and even the enemy, will come in.
May God break my heart so completely, that the whole world falls in.


Peter and Nancy said...

This is such a dangerous, life-changing prayer. Thank you for reminding us that His idea of love is so much more vast than we can imagine.

Lorisa said...

Thanks for your thoughts Sarah! Quite a prayer... I've been thinking not quite along the same lines, but sort of… I think how often as believers, we want the USA to be a certain comfortable way just for us! AND when it's not, then there's this battle going on: "Are you a this or a that?" (fill in the blank with political terms). I don't want to be a "this or that" in our community. I want to know personally Jesus' deep grace and love daily. Then I want to give it out to those I come in contact with daily. I know too that His deep grace touching my life is also asking me to be willing to love/give in situations where I normally want to run the other direction…

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