(with tears streaming down my face) "Oh sweet Jesus, I know mamas who literally aren't eating because they need the money for school fees. 900 kids - waiting to know if they'll get to go to school. I don't know if I can bear this weight"
This is my swing.
Back and forth.
Back and forth.
Sometimes I stay in one place for a day...sometimes just minutes.
I think, if most leaders were honest, they would share the same thing.
Wanna know why I think this happens? (and no the answer isn't just that we are all a bit mentally unbalanced).
This is battle.
The Bible says that "our fight is not against flesh and blood" and calls us to "loose the chains of injustice." Those chains - the chains of slavery or poverty or defeat or the endless amount of lies that have been spoken into and over those we serve that leave them broken and wounded - they are the enemy's playground. He loves these chains. He wraps them tightly and expects them to stay put.
enter: us. fighters for justice.
We charge in wanting to bring light to dark places, wanting to loose those chains, wanting to change communities with HOPE and opportunity.
Guess what? He's not too thrilled with this plan.
Therefore, we have a battle to face.
For me, right now, it's school fees. They are always an uphill battle. Or maybe better put, I feel like we are crawling uphill in battle, while carrying a weight which cannot be measured, while dodging people throwing things and bullets whizzing past our heads.
It's hard. It hurts. We see little rays of miracles popping through and get so excited. Then, someone comes with a little bullet - an unkind word, a note that we are failing in the expectations they had of us, a thoughtless action, a mean FB message - and we crash all over again.
This battling thing - it isn't for the weak at heart - it's hard. Hard. It hurts pretty much on an hourly basis. It's exhausting. I guess all things you should expect of battle, huh?
But they are worth it. Stella, who's been choosing to not eat so she can send her kids to school, is worth it. Scoviah, who never thought she'd have the opportunity to go to school because she's a girl and one of many, is worth it. My sweet girls, Anyait and Auma, who felt like no one would ever see them and love them are worth it. The battle is worth it. I will charge into this battle every day, all day...but it's still hard.
So if you see a non profit leader today - tell them it's ok to swing from faith and tears in a few hours time frame. Tell them you know the burden they carry is oh so heavy. Hug them and tell them they are doing a great job (even if you can think of 10 ways they could improve). Pray for them. Pray over them. Pray with them. Share their stories and help shoulder the burden a little. Oh and write a check - that always helps too :) (kidding...kind of...ok not really).