Friday, August 21, 2009

Faith Like A Child

I'm helping at a camp this weekend for boys who are in the foster care system. When they arrived this morning, I was observing carefully. The hesitancy, uncertainty, and insecurities ran wild on their faces and in their body language. But the love of the staff burst right through those walls and made nearly every one of those boys smile through warm cheers.

During one part of the singing time, one particular boy began crying so another staff member and I stepped outside with him. He was sobbing breathlessly, unable to get any words out. We asked him what was making him cry, and he finally was able to get out something like, "That God is always with me."

That was such a powerful emotional experience. I could just imagine what this boy had gone through in his life to be so moved by such a simple truth: every hurt, every sad moment, every ounce of loneliness he had felt was somehow comforted with the knowledge that God was with him the whole time.

I wish I could say I'm the same way, but I'm not. While I do know this for sure, and even work hard to remember it in difficult times, I don't have the kind of faith this boy has - the kind that is so strong that it moves me to tears. Maybe because it's not "manly" to cry, or because it's not "American" to be so dependent (on anyone, especially not God). But the truth of the matter is that, like that boy, the realization that we need God so desperately is crucial to an honest faith.

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