‘What does love look like? It has the hands to help others. It has the feet to hasten to the poor and needy. It has eyes to see misery and want. It has the ears to hear the sighs and sorrows of men …… That is what love looks like.’ - St. Augustine

Friday, September 17, 2010

I'm not judging, I'm one of them...

I feel sick thinking of the insular, self-indulgent, vapid world I just left. I'm not judging. I was and am a part of it. How easy it is to live our lives in the imagined peace of our tiny little worlds. How easy it is to forget the unimaginable suffering of so many people. We have music and tv and facebook and shopping and gossip and Hollywood and politics and a whole host of ridiculous causes to keep us occupied and oblivious to the raw and very real suffering of so many other human beings.

We can fool ourselves for an entire lifetime that it is 'not our problem' that we 'can't save the world' that we don't carry any responsibility for this mess. But I know that is a lie of Epic proportions. It IS our problem.  We do carry the responsibility. We just choose to turn a blind eye. We choose selfishness and self-pleasing and self-preservation and fool ourselves into believing it is "ok" every step of the way. It's not.  While we facebook chat and browse the internet for the 'newest' and 'coolest', while we pat ourselves on the back for letting that person cut us in traffic, while we warm our own hearts with thoughts of our own meritous behavior, a very different world lurks outside ours, and it needs our attention. It needs our LOVE.

I could mention the 146 million orphans again, but that leaves out the homeless, the sick, the mentally ill, the criminal, the captive, the lost...

Tonight I just can't bear the pain of this world. I wish more people cared...and not just in word, but in ACTION. Where are the heroes? Where are the compassionate armies of people who could be serving others, healing bodies and minds and hearts? How can people sit in their fancy homes and fancy cars knowing that their money could serve a higher purpose? How can so many people ignore so many needs?

I am as guilty as the next person and I hate myself for it. God, please help me to understand. Please remind me every day, every hour, every minute, that LOVE is a verb.

Love requires ACTION.


  1. if nothing else keri, you are a leader of heroes and inspire others to do good works. rest. breathe. adjust to the job you need to do. i'm scared for you and nast for the passport situation. if she doesn't exist to them, do you have an american passport for her at all...

    good luck with the apartment hunting.

    i love the frequent updates over the past few days. you're fierce.

  2. Love is action.
    Keep on. You are amazing.

  3. Amen Keri! :) A very well put and honest post.
    Why is it, when we get back here, we promise ourselves we won't indulge, and then we do? Why?
    While we choose to live simply, it isn't that simple or even in comparison to those outside of our world. How do we get so much stuff? How does it creep into our lives?
    I LOVED living in Ukraine. It was so simple. It wasn't easy. It was freeing though, in a different sort of way. Just so basic. People there don't live to eat, they eat to live. They don't work their hands to the bone to play, they work to survive.
    I wish we COULD save the whole world, and the burden overwhelms.
    I don't know the answers, but I do know, the little we CAN do, we should, and that starts with me. Thanks for the reminder.
    We are stuck in Pinocchio Land.

  4. This is a moving post for me. I think this all the time. Thank you for sharing and keep safe!!

  5. I second Christine- You and Nastia are real life Heroes. You are inspirational. I wanna be like you when I grow up!

  6. ouch. You needed to write this, it seems, for yourself and for the rest of us. Thank you for that.

    I have been struggling with these ideas for a while now, wanting to trust God more completely, and give so much more back to him than I do. I want to help the orphans of this world, and am so moved by their stories--and yet, I confess it is to easy for me to sigh and say, well, I don't know how, I'm not feeling a clear call to specific action, my husband is not supportive, etc. But more and more I am wondering if we can truly love God without sacrifice, esp. without giving up our comfy, self-satisfied lives. So my sacrifice may have to be figuring out how to raise money to support orphans in a way that my husband will give his blessing to. Not easy, but why am I allowing myself to use one obstacle to hinder me from obeying God? No, I don't feel a clear call--um, but what about what God has already called ALL his believers to do, which is specifically love Him BY taking care of widows and orphans? We find so many ways to keep the blinders on, it is shaming.

    And yet, I am still doing it. Still griping, like I did today, about the imperfections of my overall likable, healthy, neuro-typical, children? When there are so many families who are struggling with how to love kids (or, in your case, young adults) who are struggling with mental or physical health, with painful pasts, who are sometimes not even likable?

    Ok, I'm going on and on. Your post touched a chord in me, clearly. I hear you. I cannot understand what you are experiencing, or the depths to which you are grieving now, for all the hurt in this world, for the hurt that has affected Anya in ways you fear might be forever. . . but I hear at least some of it, through your eloquence.

    So thank you again for sharing. I seriously feel priviledged to listen in on your story.

    I feel I should let you know I blogged about you tonight--so you can check it out and let me know if that is ok with you. http://oblesseday.blogspot.com/
    And in my next post I'll be directing my readers to this one, if that is ok too.

    Am praying for all of you.


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