Bob Pierce, the founder of World Vision used to regularly pray “Let my heart be broken with the things that break the heart of God”. What an amazing attitude to seek to achieve. When we see people less fortunate than we are, what is our attitude toward them? Are you thankful that you are blessed and don’t have to live in those circumstances? Do you quickly look away before they catch your gaze and in some way obligate you to do something about their plight? Or do you perhaps say a quick prayer for them and then carry on with your day? I must admit that, at one time or another throughout my life, I have experienced all of the above reactions. On occasion, thankfully more often than not these days, I am deeply moved by their condition. I sincerely want to help, yet often find my hands and feet are slow to move and reach out to them. How different would it be if we truly saw them the way God sees them? We know from Scripture that poverty breaks the heart of our God. We know that Christ loves with the deepest of passion and that He weeps with a soul-aching sorrow. I believe His heart is broken and He weeps whenever He sees one of His creations in poverty, struggling just to get through each day. How I want my heart to break in the same way. When I see those in need, I don’t want to pass by or just be thankful that I am not in that condition; I don’t want to stop at a quick prayer or with a burdened heart. I want my heart to break apart in agony as I see one who is loved by God, and yet is hurting in our broken down world. I want to ache so badly for that person that I will give them a smile and a kind word, wrap my heart around them and discover ways I might help them. I want my heart to break for the things that break the heart of Jesus.
How about you? What is it that breaks your heart? Do you find yourself aching for those in need or is it easier to avoid those people? In James 1:27, we are told that true religion is found in caring for the widows and the orphans. In Isaiah 58:7 we are told that true fasting is to share food with the hungry, give the homeless a place to stay and clothe those who are in need. These are the things that we must do if we are to be true followers of Jesus. Look again at the things that break the heart of God: widows (as I’ve pointed out before, I believe this includes the single mothers that are so numerous in society today), orphans, those who don’t have enough to eat, the homeless and those who live in poverty. These things all break the heart of God! Do these same things break your heart? What are you doing today to help those in need? What are you going to do tomorrow? Will we continue to walk by the very ones that God is aching for us to help? We are the hands and feet of God. We are the called. We are the servants of Christ. There is no one else to do this job. How will we respond? Let us pray that our hearts would be broken by the things that break the heart of God.