God sees us in our pain. God knows exactly where those girls are and He is working in ways we know nothing about. God told us there is evil in our world and that sin abounds, but He also told us that He is about the restoration of the world and that He is doing it in ways that we least expect.
It is tempting to think that there really is “nothing that we can do” but I disagree. God has invited us to partner with Him is His mission to change the world and we get to begin right now, right where we are.
I’d like to suggest to you, as I have suggested to myself, that the first change needs to come in me. I need to recognize my own propensity to sinfulness and work to clean that out. I need to clean out, but also to fill up. I need to fill myself up with the goodness that God desires to have in me. I need to be so filled with God, and His love, that it spills out into this world.
I have been on a “campaign” to bring goodness whenever I can through acts of kindness. I don’t always keep my focus but here are some ways that I try to bring kindness:
I try to look for ways to show compassion to others through acknowledging their presence. I try to speak a personal word to the grocery clerk, the person on the street in my neighborhood, the parking lot attendant or the nurse in the hospital. Just seeing someone as a child of God, and acknowledging their presence in this world, may seem small but I believe this is what God does. He sees us right where we are. When someone notices your presence it feels good. You feel valued. Often those who go unnoticed use negative means to get noticed, to demand value. We have an opportunity to take on the attribute of God that values each human being that He so lovingly creates.
I try to go the next step by offering a small act of kindness. If someone is behind me in line, and I can let them go ahead, I try to do so. I just ask, “Are you in a hurry?” or “Would you like to go ahead of me?” I try to give up my seat or reach the shelf out of reach (being tall has its options). When I see a stressed parent I offer a silent prayer for them. Jesus came to seek and to save. He did both large and small acts of kindness as He went along the way. I think we can too.
I believe that we are each invited to partner with God in turning the direction toward evil in this world, to good. It may sound simple but I think Jesus took simple and multiplied it for good. You may have much bigger ideas than I do. I know that together we can pursue much bigger issues in our community and world. However, on the days that God shows you something in your own “little corner of the world,” like He does me, I pray that we will both partner with Him.
The following prayer is "The Prayer Appointed for the Week" from the Divine Hours that I use each day in my personal devotional time.
“Almighty Father who gave your only Son to die for our sins and to rise for our justification: Give me grace so to put away the leaven of malice and wickedness, that I may always serve you in pureness of living and truth; through Jesus Christ your Son my Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.”
Enjoy the adventure of partnering with God!