There is a deep pain in carrying one another’s burdens. The strange thing, though, is that you want to.
My time in New Hampshire, though not as long as expected, was not for nothing. I have come away with fruit born out of tears and pain not understood. We are a family, and we care deeply for one another. When one laughs, we laugh with him. When one is hurting, we feel his pain. I have learned in my three months to look beyond myself and feel that pain.
I’ve always been self-focused. I’ve always been worried about my own problems. I was often too concerned about what was going on with me to see what others were going through. I had a heart for people, but looking back now, it was extremely limited. I thought I loved people, but now I’m not really sure if I did.
As I said, we are a family. We laugh together, play together, cry together, eat together, fight together, mourn together, and pray together. During my time, we watched as many of our family chose to leave and it struck us all deeply. I remember listening one day right after someone had left, and one of our brothers was especially struggling. Raw emotion choked his voice as he cried out to us and to the Lord for prayer and comfort for not just him, but also for his brother who had left. I felt burdened. I felt this deep pain in my heart for my brother who was struggling. I wanted to take this pain away from him, heap it on myself for Pete’s sake…just give him a sense of relief. I cried and advocated to the Lord on his behalf with a heavy heart. That’s when things began changing.
I began to view people differently. I felt more loving and forgiving towards them. Something that would once annoy me, didn’t. I felt a tugging on my heart when I saw my brothers and sisters struggling.
And it hurt. It hurt so bad.
I felt as though I really was taking on their pain. But it was something I wanted to do. I wanted to help them, I continued praying for them. I mourned alongside them. I loved them.
I loved them.
God works in mighty ways. He’s been deeply working on my heart. People have stories. They are hurting. You never know what’s going on in their lives. Encourage one another, take time to listen. Pray together. We are called to be in fellowship with one another, and it is a powerful, beautiful thing. Take care of your brothers and sisters in Christ. Cherish them and build them up. Love them, as He has loved us.