More than we can handle

God never gives us more than we can handle. I just wish he did not trust me so much. -Mother Teresa

Just when I think my heart can not break anymore, God reminds me that he is in control.

Today as we were dedicating the special needs center, I was introduced to a little boy who had just arrived. I was truly not prepared for what I would see. It was possibly the worst and most heartbreaking case I have ever seen. This 10 month old little boy named Jefferson is fighting for his life.

The doctors were surrounding him as he lay whimpering on the examination table. His young 20 year old mother stood nearby watching. They had come from the mountains hours away.

Trying to comfort him, I carefully picked him up and gently scooped up his head. I could barely hold the weight. His head probably weighs more than three times as much as the rest of his body. But his alert little eyes stared right into mine. His whimpering soon stopped. Like any baby, he just wanted to be held.

The doctors are still evaluating him but he appears to have hydrocephalus combined with severe malnutrition. He desperately needs surgery but his body is simply not strong enough.

I couldn’t help but think how serious this condition would be even back home. But here in Guatemala, a child like this almost has no hope. Well, almost …

We surrounded this little guy in prayer today -praying for a miracle in his life. Because of the rescue center, hospital and special needs home, he is in the best place possible to receive the help that he needs. There is no guarantee he will survive and his road will be long and hard, but now he has hope.

Today as I think back on all that I have seen and experienced, I echo the words of Mother Teresa and I understand what she must have meant. What I saw today, was simply too much. It makes me wonder -does God really know how much we can handle emotionally? Does he understand how much I want to run and hide away from the pain?

But I think God knows exactly what he is doing. While to us it may feel overwhelming and simply too much at times, perhaps that is just what we need to wake-up. Perhaps that is just what we need to help us admit that the comfortable world we live in is not the real world. Maybe that is just what we need to see that we have been lulled into a deep sleep, and we need to wake up.

In my new book Awake, I quote John Stott who says,”The horror of the situation is that our affluent culture has drugged us; we no longer feel the pain of other people’s deprivations. Yet the first step toward recovery of our Christian integrity is to be aware that our culture blinds, deafens and dopes us. Then we shall begin to cry to God to open our eyes, unstop our ears and stab our dull consciences awake, until we see, hear and feel what through his word he has been saying to us all the time. Then we shall take action.”

If feeling emotionally overwhelmed at times is exactly what we need to inspire us to action – then I say bring it on. Keep trusting me with more. Don’t let me grow numb. Keep me awake.

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