As I sit coffee in hand, lazily taking in the surroundings of my newly Christmasy-decorated home, I am thankful. Thankful that Maslow’s theory is at work and we have the basic necessities to be comfortable, thankful that we have a little extra to make our home comfy cozy and probably way more clothes than 2 people need. I am thankful for a husband who loves me unconditionally and cheers me on as I run the race Christ has set before me. I am thankful for parents who raised me to be compassionate and to give out of lack or abundance cheerfully. I am thankful for a Father who sent His only Son to stand in propitiation for my sins and allow me to live a redemptive life. I am thankful for Grace and Mercy and Love. I am thankful that whether I have a good day or a bad day, I am content as I fall into the arms of refuge each and every night.
This is all relative to what I see in the world. Some by choice, most not, there are those that live on the streets, beg on the corners, are mentally incapable of living a normal life or choose drugs and alcohol over food. There are those oppressed by government, threatened by rebels, soldiers and racists. Many spend their lives suffering daily bombings, rape and picking through garbage to feed their children to offer them one more day of life. Others experience affliction from drought and unhealthy environments.
I feel like I’ve seen it all; fortunately I know I have not.
We have, however, been privileged to work with those that have.
Each missionary God has given us the honor of meeting has seen a different side of sorrow; some within our country and some outside. Whether they have chosen to minister to a local church, community, a country or nation of people, their hearts are not their own. Field warriors bear an uncommon compassion. The dictionary describes the word uncommon as rare, unusual, exceptional; used to emphasize the great extent of something; concern, consideration, empathy and kindness. The word compassion in Hebrew is “raham” and means “to love from the womb”; the tender love of a mother for her own helpless child.
(God uses “raham” when He describes himself to Moses in exodus 34:6. ‘Then the LORD passed by in front of him (Moses) and proclaimed, ‘The LORD, the LORD God, compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in lovingkindness and truth’.)
Those called to venture into a world many of us are unaware of, are rare and tender lovers of people. Abounding in ‘lovingkindness and truth’ they share the devotion of Christ with those that don’t know what a Christmas decoration looks like, who couldn’t dream of having food on the table every night or a change of clothes each day. They hug the little children, wash feet with hidden tears and tell silly stories just to bring a laugh.
I’m thankful that my vision has been increased by these unique elite.