Saturday, April 1, 2017
There is more pain in the hearts of these kids than we could ever have enough time to sit with. And yet, we saw and experienced joy tucked into so many moments and corners, for it is into such places that God himself went when he was here in the flesh. What a gift we are given to walk into places and stories of despair with authentic hope. The incarnation didn't end when Jesus ascended, it continues every moment we live out the Gospel as made possible by God's spirit in us.
I've been reading Diane Langberg's book Suffering and the Heart of God and I love the way she describes incarnational ministry:
Demonstrate in the flesh the character of God over time so that who you are reveals God to the survivor
[of trauma]. That, of course, is the incarnation, isn't it? Jesus, in the flesh, explaining God to us. Jesus,
bringing the unseen down into flesh and blood actualities. The survivor needs us to incarnate God for two
reasons. One, we all need that. Secondly, this need is intensified for the trauma survivor because what has
been repeatedly taught to a child in the seen is antithesis of the truth of God. She has learned about
fathers, power, trust, love, and refuge from one who emulated the father of lies.
If you want the trauma survivor to understand that God is a refuge, then be one for her. If you want her
to grasp the faithfulness of God, then be faithful to her. If you want her to understand the truthfulness of
God, then never lie to her. If you want her to understand the infinite patience of God, then be patient with
her. And where you are not a refuge, or are tired of being faithful, or are fudging in your answers or
growing impatient with the necessary repetition, then get down on your knees and ask God to give you
more of himself so that you might represent him well.
That challenges and encourages me. May God continue to fill us with his presence and poor it out in flesh and blood actualities. Please continue to pray for me, the HfO team, and these kids.