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"No matter where I am, your teachings fill me with songs." - Psalm 119:54 (CEV)

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

My World

Okay, I've given up.  This is my regular Wednesday post.  I'm buried under too much homework right now to even think about doing two this week.  On the bright side, it was a great prompt, so hopefully this won't be too disappointing:


My world is dirty.

I walk on dirt roads.

I sleep on a dirt floor.

Dirt covers every inch of me.

My world is dirty.


My world is empty.

The house is empty.

My pockets are empty.

My stomach is empty.

My heart is empty.

My world is empty.


My world is heavy.

My father's eyes are heavy.

My mother's fears are heavy.

My classmates' words are heavy.

The weight on my chest is heavy.

The future looms, heavy.

My world is heavy.


My world is numbered.

Twenty-four, the number of hours lasting too long yet never long enough.

Nineteen, the number of minutes it takes to walk to the nearest water source.

Fourteen, the number of years Mama had lived when my oldest sister was born.

Eight, the number of people in our family.

Four, the number of jobs Mama and Papa had last week.

Zero, the number of jobs they have now.

My world is numbered.


My world is shadowed.

No matter how many times my siblings and I race,

No matter how many happy songs we sing,

No matter how many hugs my parents give me,

Nothing washes away the dirt,

Nothing fills the emptiness,

Nothing lifts the heaviness,

Nothing erases the numbers.

Those things are always there,

Haunting me.

My world is shadowed.


But,

Even in the shadows,

There are always tiny hints of light.


There is a church near where I live.

The pastor is very nice.

He and several other people run a center there.

"Compassion International," they say,

And the things they tell me light candles in the dark corners of my soul.


They tell me about Jesus.

I love to hear about Jesus.

We sing about Him, too.

Those are some of my favorite songs.

It makes me so happy to think about Him,

And speaking His Name chases all the shadows away.


I have a sponsor.

She is very nice.

She sends me lots and lots of letters.

I feel very blessed.

A lot of children do not get letters from their sponsors.


She tells me about what is going on in her life,

Holidays she celebrates,

Things she reads in the Bible.

She always starts her letters by asking how I am,

How my family is doing.

She always ends them with a Bible verse,

Then signs her name with love.

She tells me she is praying for me.

I pray for her, too.

Every day.


My sponsor is a student.

She only works during the summers.

I think she might worry sometimes that she doesn't have a lot to give me.

I know some sponsors give extra money to their sponsored children,

Their children's families.

My sponsor sends me a little money for my birthday,

Christmas,

But I think she wishes she could give me more.


I want to tell her it doesn't matter,

That the best thing she could give me is love,

And she gives that to me in abundance.

It's in every word of every letter she writes,

The Bible verses she tucks in at the ends,

The smile on her face in the picture she sent,

The one where she holds a picture of me in her hands.


Sometimes, my world still looks dirty,

Empty,

Heavy,

Shadowed,

But I'm starting to find hope.

I am loved by so many people -

My parents,

My sponsor,

The people at church,

God -

And all those people want the best for me.

I am starting to hope that,

Someday,

My world will not be shadowed and dark,

That I will not have to worry about having two jobs or zero jobs,

Many fears and empty pockets.

I think that if I work hard

And trust God,

He will take care of me.

I think He has amazing plans for me!

Maybe,

Someday,

I'll be an artist,

And I'll draw pictures that thousands of people will see.

I could show them pictures of the world I grew up in.

Maybe if they saw the would start to understand.

Maybe if they understood they would help.

Or maybe I'll be a doctor,

And help the sick people in my village who can't afford to get better,

Or an author,

And write a book about my life.

I don't know.

I'll have to pray a lot and see where God leads me,

But I know that,

Wherever that is,

It will be good.


My world is dirty,

Empty,

Heavy,

Numbered,

Dark.

But God?

He washes all the dirt away,

Fills all the empty places,

Lifts every burden,

Erases every digit,

And makes the darkness flee.

He holds out His hand and says,

"Welcome.

Welcome to My world." 


Reasons 2405-2466 today,

Looking at who He is,

Always looking,

Seeking to know Him more:
 
***These reasons have been removed.  For more information, please read this post.  To read other reasons, view any posts with the label 10,000 Reasons from August 30, 2012 or earlier, or from October 10, 2012 or later.***


This is the last week of Compassion blog month!

As of Monday, 2,297 children have been sponsored.

Our goal is 3,108.

That means 811 still need to be sponsored.

You can help!!!

Please visit the Compassion Sponsor a Child page and pray for or consider sponsoring one of the wonderful children listed there.  For more ideas on how you can pray, please refer to the list given in this post.

Compassion Blog Month posts (2012):
     -  Compassion Blog Month! 
     Dear Daddy, . . .
     -  Pintrest Contest!!!
     -  My World
     -  On why there was no post yesterday . . . (Blog Month results!)


(Take the challenge with us!  Please?  Sylvia's taking a hiatus, and I'd love some company.  You won't regret it!)

<a href="http://maryschieferstein.blogspot.com/search/label/10000%20Reasons" target="_blank"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-8zkGH23srZ8/T2i3Bun0O9I/AAAAAAAABSw/8giPvnJmCPI/s320/10000ReasonsButton.jpg" /></a>
Counting in community:




  And linking up at A Holy Experience today, talking about suffering.  It seemed appropriate.


Also, please look at some of the other beautiful posts found at the bottom of this one.  Maybe bless the author with a comment?  It's a blessing to know that God has used your imperfect words to bless another.



  

4 comments:

CynthiaJSwenson said...

I love your Compassion child story! I just had a couple random thoughts a bit ago as I heard Job being read on my local Christian radio station. God says at the end of Job, that Job's friends did not speak correctly about God.One of their main incorrect thoughts was that God punished the wicked here on earth so in their eyes, Job was receiving what He deserved.In my general opinion of the Bible, I think the righteous here on earth tend to suffer like Jesus did & God is saving His wrath until the end for the wicked :(Lazarus & the rich man). Of course, as Christians we must alleviate as much suffering as possible. Job's suffering helped him know God. Interesting how your compassion blogs coincide with Job! Love & prayers, in Jesus, Cynthia

Mary said...

Thank you, Cynthia! I don't know how accurate it is, but I'm glad you liked it.

Thank you for sharing about Job and holding me accountable. I really appreciate it. I did look up the text you were talking about, and what God said was that Job's friends hadn't spoken rightly about Him. Since it wasn't more specific, I flipped back a bit and looked at what Job's friends are saying. I think (and I could definitely be very wrong here) that the main issue is their narrow view of God. They think they understand all of God's purposes, but they don't. They're putting Him in a box, and it's the boundaries they're trying to place on Him that are wrong. I do not think that the main issue is that Job's friends said God punished the wicked here on earth, because I do believe that there is a sense in which that is true. There are many, many examples of God's punishment of the wicked while they are living here on earth throughout the Bible, and John Piper argues that this continues today (http://www.desiringgod.org/resource-library/sermons/the-wrath-of-god-against-ungodliness-and-unrighteousness). Obviously, He still withholds some of His wrath, but there is a sense in which His wrath truly is being revealed. Job's friends, however, think this punishment is the only reason for suffering, which is definitely not true! God uses our trials to test us, refine us, and draw us closer to Him! Job's friends missed that point. On the other hand, just because God's wrath isn't the only reason for suffering doesn't mean it isn't a reason for suffering, so I don't think I want to change my list without more evidence that it needs changing.

Yes, it is interesting. Bet God planned it that way.

Love & prayers for you, too, friend.

Christina said...

This is amazing...moving and realistic. It's a sad reality but you are a bright light of hope. Thanks for sharing these words.

Mary said...

Oh, thank you so much, Christina! I wasn't sure how accurate I would be, given how little I actually know. And thank you so much for stopping by! Hopefully I'll make it over to your blog again soon!

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