True Worship Steps Into Pain
From Dan On Haiti
Tonight, my heart is half a world away, with friends who
are aggressively working to respond to the crisis in Haiti.
I don’t know all those friends by name; I do know that I am
thankful for their feet going in my stead, ambling through
airports and stepping into rubble.
It is ours to remember, that in a time like this in the world,
when poverty stricken nations find trouble upon trouble
mounting toward them, that we who bear the Hope of the
world enter into their pain – like the God Who we follow.
If Jesus’ life evidences anything to us about true worship,
it is that the God unseen enters into, walks into, even runs
into, the pain of those who are “other.” He spends Him-
self on behalf of those He loves. This is His way.
We who live far from Haiti in these moments must allow
ourselves to bear pain with them, as part of our human family,
and as another reason for the great wealth and gifts we possess
in our parts of the world. Strength finds its reason and purpose
in covering another’s weakness. This is His Design.
They are our family, no matter each one’s faith perspective.
We do not all need to be in Haiti. We must trust that those who
must go, will go. But is not enough to shake our heads and
share moments of awe and sorrow. We must make the
request of God that He reveal to us our part to play, no matter
how simple it may be.
I encourage you, as an act of living worship as you read this,
to ask what your part is to play. Then, simply respond.
We each have a portion in one another’s story. We are connected
with Haiti’s turmoil in ways we may only sense when the lights
are out and we are considering the world in which we find ourselves.
In this case of pain that reaches our eyes and ears, we are invited
by God to weep and mourn with them over what is all of our great
loss. If it were directly my own, I would wan them to ask what
their part was to play in coming to my loved one’s support.
True worship, in the face of great suffering, asks for an invitation
into the pain that God and the sufferers carry. Simply ask, then simply
respond. It is enough.
In this journey of willingness, we find real prayers rising,
authentic acts of physical and spiritual generosity, and the ability
to partner with God in the ways in which He is inviting us.
It is a privilege to worship with you, in our generation, and to lead
others into the kind of worship encounters that compel us into the
very Heart of Love, and into the very Heart of Suffering.
We, as followers of Jesus, choose both.
In prayer with you for Haiti,
Dan Wilt, M.Min.
Learning Community Director