Strengthen me according to your word . . ..
I will run the course of Your commandments,
For you shall enlarge my heart.
These verses from Psalm 119 (28, 32) jumped off the page for me this morning. My soul is dragging. Some burdens are part of the territory of love, loving kids who cry when their heels hurt, loving team mates who struggle with the negative aspects of this culture's intrusive neediness and manipulation, loving patients who can not get the medicine they need, loving a piece of this earth that has been scarred so deeply by evil. Some of the burdens are part of the territory of sin, wanting to fix things my way (phone calls and letters to newspapers can be good, but underneath I know my own heart is not fully right), the weight of self-righteousness and self-justification that has to be uprooted daily. And some of the heaviness comes from not knowing the territory well enough to distinguish WHERE the heaviness comes from or how to lift it. So Psalm 119 offers this: the concrete truth of God's word, brought into our souls to enlarge them. Truth leading to expansion. It would be easier to protect my heart than to enlarge it, and the temptation is strong. Sometimes I don't even want to make eye contact with a parent of yet another child teetering on the edge of survival. And there is a legitimate limit to the pain I can absorb, and a God-given command to rest and refresh, so I am looking forward to a weekend of respite in Kampala with kids. However I would also pray for a large-heartedness that comes back from the rest to embrace the battle once again.