I remember you.
Curly hair, sun-kissed skin that emphasized your freckles. A smile that still managed to convey a small piece of hope.
Your eyes reflected the hurt and abuse that had stolen your innocence. You spent your life tiptoeing around the glass shards buried in the sand, a constant reflection and reminder that safety was never going to be yours. Your tears hit that same ground, shattering all hope as they became one with the dust.
Your purpose slowly dissolved, blown away by the harsh winds of evil. All you wanted is love, yet all that you know is the hands of fear that left a mark upon your skin.
I remember you.
I still remember the way the sunlight highlighted the sorrow and the pain you’d been through. I remember holding you close and saying a prayer, knowing I would probably never see you again.
This little girl was one of the ones I met in South Africa a couple years ago. I was working in a township, volunteering with a missions base. It was only once or twice a week, but every time I went the little kids made me realize just how quickly you can open your heart to love.
Those kids reminded me that all around us there are hearts that feel lost and forgotten, wondering when they will feel loves embrace. Hearts that ache to feel the warmth of a kindness, to know that they are worth fighting for. Sometimes that is as simple as sitting cross legged In the dirt being fully present with the little kids that quickly surround you. It is as simple as letting one little girl play with your hair while you try to piece together the other kids stories that they try to tell simultaneously in broken English.
I often used to wonder what my purpose was there. I felt that if I didn’t stay with those kids that I was just another missionary there for a moment and gone.
Yet lately as I reflect on the past few years I remember that God used me in so many ways to plant love and purpose. He used me to be an echo of love to the hearts that only felt darkness. An echo that would resonate deep within as a reason to have hope and to keep looking towards the light.
Our purpose isn’t defined by the season that we are in or the things we do. Jesus didn’t love based on them circumstance around him or if someone fit into His routine and mission for the day. He stopped to love those in need, noticing the overlooked and shamed outcasts and sinners.
I’ve been reading through the book of Matthew , and one thing that truly captivates my heart is the way Jesus is okay with being interrupted. His love for people is so much greater than the agenda people have set for him. A
I am gently reminded today that my purpose is simply to walk like Jesus did. To slow down and to walk with my eyes open, ready to speak life into people. To be fully present where I am, giving those around me my love.
Perhaps today that will be the little kids I have the privilege to teach. Maybe a coworker , waitress or cashier.
It is time for us to step out in boldness, to become echoes of love to every heart that we meet.
Remember that you have a purpose today and every day. A purpose that is going to impact hearts around you. So regardless of where you’re at today, choose kindness. Choose to love passionately and purposefully. Choose to fight for those around you and to be an echo of love.
“If a man has a hundred sheep, and one goes astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine on the mountains and go in seArch of the one that went astray? And if he finds it, truly, I say to you, that he rejoices over it more than over the ninety-nine that went astray”