This has been my prayer. Heal my heart Lord. Open my eyes to things I don’t see. Show me how to love like you do. Break my heart for what breaks yours.
Has anyone ever told you to be careful what you pray for? Praying to have eyes to see things the way God does and for your heart to hurt for what His hurts for- it can be a really emotional, difficult ride.
As I have prayed this and really desired for God to change my heart, I have seen how over the years my experiences have helped me to see people more. To see them differently. To love them better. To understand their heart. God can use our own experiences to see others. But God can also use those situations to help others see too. By sharing our experiences, our journey, our passions, our heart, we can help others see too.
At 17, I found out I was pregnant. Over the years I have been able to have conversations with people and help them to understand what it is like to experience pregnancy as a young girl. This is a scary and difficult time. Others who are facing this need love, grace, acceptance but often, that is not what they receive.
My dad took his life almost 3 years ago. Before I had to walk through loosing someone to suicide, I thought suicide was sad, but I honestly hadn’t really thought much about it. My thoughts about the topic are deep now. My view of suicide and all of those affected by it are now full of grace and compassion. Sharing my experience with others has helped other people shift their view too.
On a regular basis I see people who are so passionate about something I know nothing about. You know what has changed me, wrecked me, and opened my eyes to the world as God sees it? Taking time to hear others sharing the passions that God has laid on their life. There is nothing quite like sitting down with someone and listening to them explain why they fighting for a cause, a person, a country. I have walked away from conversations with a new perspective and appreciation for others in a way I never have before.
If you want to start seeing the world like God does, to love like He does, start talking to people. God calls us all differently, uniquely, but He calls us all to love. We aren’t all going to travel to another country, adopt children, speak from a stage, or mentor someone who needs guidance, but we all can love and support others who are doing those things. (Encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing. 1 Thessalonians 5:10)
I can’t even explain to you how different I feel about things after hearing someones heart. Talking to a missionary doesn’t mean that I am going to feel like I have to uproot my family and go- but sometimes I think we shy away from learning because we are afraid that through learning, we might have to do something we don’t want to. Ignorance may be bliss, but theres also lots to miss and we shouldn’t let fear of what God might ask us to do keep us from this.
Recently I had a conversation with a missionary and learned that one of the biggest needs of full time missionaries, are visits from people outside of the mission field that allow them to connect, relax, feel loved and supported. I was surprised! Listening to her tell me about her experiences was so eye opening. I don’t feel God called me to leave this country and be a full time missionary, but my heart was stirred to use the gifting and calling God has placed on my life in the mission field. She helped me to see that some of the things I had thought, weren’t really true and then shared with me so I could understand what it is really like. My heart is now stirred different because I now understand how I can be useful in a situation I thought I had no place in before.
I’ve learned that a lot of times I discount myself because I don’t feel qualified to do what others are doing and the truth is, a lot of times I am not! But the more I learn, the more I see that Gods unique calling on my life, and the gifting He has given me can often be used in ways I didn’t see before. It doesn’t always look like what I think it should, but that is the beauty in it!
Listening to others stories can often help us to see the world differently. If you want to God to stir your heart, be in prayer, and then ask and listen to others as they share their hearts! Remember that the unique journey He has taken you on can also be a source of life for others too. I love hearing others stories so if you want to share, lets grab coffee soon! If you decide you would like to share in a more public way, I would love to be able to share others passions on my blog too!