Rest days are difficult for me these days. It’s much easier for me to press on working through my muddled thoughts and heavy heart than to process it most days. Today I chose to spend some time with God in the mess and ask him some of the hard questions. One of the hard questions for me lately has been ‘How do I bear witness to horrible events and evil but still stay healthy and proclaim hope in all of it?’ God responded in grace and purpose today and I wanted to share some of His words in the mess.
I sit here smelling fresh coffee beans being ground and blown my way through a fan. Small potted plants line the wall perfectly bringing life to the grey walls and dirty Phnom Penh streets in view. My heart feels heavy, and I ask God why it’s so hard for me to sit still and listen these days. I often leave our restoration center each day either physically exhausted or emotionally spent. My brain tries to make sense of the things I’m seeing, hearing, and working through with our rescued girls and staff everyday- but it can’t. Some days feel like we are taking steps backwards, and all we do is survive the day. I’m reminded by God that in the thick of the battle it can feel that way.
I ask God what the purpose of simply walking through each day to survive is. His answer shed some beautiful light into it for me.
‘You are to bear witness to these precious girl’s stories, their pain and suffering. And fight for their voice and healing in the mess.’
I am here simply to bear witness. To walk through their anxiety attacks and dark moments with them. To bear witness to their tears, and pray and encourage through them. To bear witness to the moments that are difficult and to the moments of peace and even breakthrough, healing, and growth. To bear witness to the moments that they overcome, learn, feel joy, and experience the love of the Father.
‘And you are to bear witness to Christ and the hope that He brings.’
And I am here on this earth to bear witness to Christ- the hope that He brings by the life he led and His death and resurrection. I am here to bear witness to how He fights for our rescued girls, the way He is tangibly showing them real love and comfort in the pain, speaking life into their bones, and providing for their every need. I am to speak hope and life in the moments that feel so dark and hopeless for our girls, hold and cry with them in their pain as I pray over them, cheer them on as they grow and take risks slowly again, and teach them that they have worth and a voice. I am to be the example of daily seeking Christ in the mess and to not fear the dark places.
“He came as a witness, to bear witness about the light, that all might believe through him.” John 1:7
A beautiful collision happens when you bear witness to not only pain and suffering but to Christ and Hope in those dark places, and that is a supernatural healing and redemption of even the darkest of evil and the most horrible things that can happen on this planet.