Wrecked. It’s a word I’ve heard used many times, and one that I thought had to look a certain way. It’s what they said would happen when I went on a mission trip for eleven months to some of the world’s poorest countries. And while my heart was broken and my eyes were opened, I didn’t feel destroyed or ruined, nor wrecked. I felt sad.
It’s not that I didn’t or don’t care. I think about the people I met overseas daily. I pray for the faces of those whose names I still can’t pronounce, and I keep their stories close to my heart. I’ve always been more of a sympathetic than an empathetic person, and I suppose that’s how God made me. At the same time, though, I’ve entertained the thought that maybe I’m cold and heartless. What other excuse is there not to have been utterly wrecked like I thought I was supposed to have been? Does my heart really break for what breaks God’s heart?
I’ve never considered myself an emotional person. It’s not hard for me to say goodbye. I’ve never cried at a movie. Comforting people does not, ever, come naturally and I tend to feel awkward when someone else is being emotional next to me.
I’ve lately come to realize that God has given me a sensitivity to be wrecked for things that I cannot see. 2 Corinthians 4:18 has often resonated with me: “We fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” The invisible things that have an eternal impact—I am daring to say, are beyond the temporary troubles of this life. My heart breaks when I see people seeking wholeness and satisfaction and truth and love in anything but the One who created their hearts for a greater purpose. I think what really breaks God’s heart is seeing his children living a life without Him. Without Him, there is no life, period. The whole reason Jesus came to Earth and died for us—was so God could have a relationship with His children. His heart breaks when His children live lives blindly from the fact that they were created for so much more.
It may be easier for some to be wrecked by tangible pain—scars on bodies and broken bones, growling tummies and beggars on the streets. We undeniably need people be wrecked over these issues. God’s heart, too, breaks for the millions of human trafficking victims in Thailand. His heart breaks for the children with swollen bellies in Africa. It was never His desire for people to suffer. I believe God allows us to be broken and passionate for the things that fall in line with the ministry He has for us.
If we are one with God, then we share a common heart with Him. God’s number one concern isn’t to make us comfortable. It isn’t to make our lives easy. And it isn’t to make sure we don’t get hurt or suffer. He cares, deeply about our pain, but God is wrecked over one simple thing: you. All He seeks is simply a relationship. He is ready, waiting with open arms. “I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.”
“…Nothing can ever separate us from his love. Death can’t, and life can’t. The angels won’t, and all the powers of hell itself cannot keep God’s love away. Our fears for today, our worries about tomorrow, or where we are—high above the sky, or in the deepest ocean—nothing will ever be able to separate us from the love of God demonstrated by our Lord Jesus Christ when he died for us.” Romans 8:38-39