I also tossed and turned all night because of a little girl in our youth program at work with a very tragic story that was just revealed to us. I want to grab her and take her home and protect her for the rest of her life.
I will not sleep well tonight because I spent my lunch break listening to a precious friend who is in a really bad situation and needs out. However, her options are limited by her ability to financially do what she needs to do. She feels alone. She feels trapped. She feels discouraged and defeated. I want to load up her things and bring her home. I want to give her money. I want to take away all the pain.
I have a friend who is in pain all the time and I want to fix that. I have a friend who has a difficult situation at home along with health problems and I’d love to make that better. The list goes on and on.
I could go to a doctor about my inability to sleep, be diagnosed and put on medication. But that would cost me time and money. It seems a waste when I believe I know exactly what my condition is. I have an chronically enlarged heart.
I also know the carrier of this disease, the One who gave it to me. His name is Jesus and as I get to know Him better, my condition worsens.
I’m finding soft spots where I used to be hard and sensitive spots where I used to be tough. I can no longer shield myself from the germs of love and caring that make me so susceptible. I find I’m compromised – unable to fend off an attack of overwhelming compassion.
When your heart is enlarged because of a physical condition, it’s not a good thing – it’s life threatening. But when your heart is enlarged because of a spiritual condition – it’s life affirming.
How will you know if you have this condition? Here are some symptoms:
- Arms that ache to reach and comfort someone who’s hurting
- Sudden bouts of crying out to God on behalf of another
- Watery eyes, sympathy pains, and blistered knees from long periods of intercessory prayer
- Love that leaks from every pore in your body
- Empathy that makes your heart rate increase
- Limited movement – you are unable to walk away
As bad as it sounds, it is a condition everyone should long for. There are so many benefits that come with Christianity and one of the greatest is being able to love with the heart of Jesus. It will hurt and it will cause you to lose a lot of sleep. But it will make you kinder, gentler, and believe it or not – it will lead to excellent spiritual health.
But as for me, when they were sick, my clothing was sackcloth; I humbled my soul with fasting; And my prayer kept returning to my bosom. I went about as though it were my friend or brother; I bowed down mourning, as one who sorrows for a mother. Psalm 35:13-14