If theres one sure thing I have learned in college it is this-
To question everything.
Pull every article a part, check the facts, take a stance, support it, and then argue against yourself, push and dig for truth. (Which, as an English major, anything can be truth if it’s well supported, so there’s that.)
This exercise is good in truth seeking, but it can also produce a tendency for cynicism. Sometimes it seems the more truth we seek, the harder the truths are. We learn about trafficking children for adoptions or brothels, female genital mutilation, and gang politics in inner cities severely straining education just to name a few.
It’s easy to believe we are incapable of making any real change because we are just single people and these are huge issues. It’s easy then to excuse ourselves for becoming detached, allowing the physical separation to become emotional as well. Its easy to get stuck thinking that the whole world is just terrible and theres nothing we can do about it. (Cue Matilda’s dad, “I’m big you’re little, and there’s nothing you can do about it!” )
Thats the thing about cynicism, it’s crippling. For one thing, it usually (at least for me) carries an air of self righteousness in wondering how people could do these things, meaning I am thinking I am better because I wouldn’t do that. (Which is false because as my pastor says, the only difference between me and them is Jesus). So we don’t do anything because we are too “good” or because we think we can’t possibly make a difference.
Once I get down from my high horse and realize I am sinful too, that I need Jesus just as much as they do, I wonder how easy it would have been for God to be cynical towards us. He has every reason to, doesn’t He? He has given us everything, He has delivered us and forgiven us, yet we are still messy, rebellious people. He has every right to turn away from us because we are just too bad, but He doesn’t. He chooses to send His only Son. Jesus chooses to come down to the mess we have made of His beautiful creation and offer redemption.
The beauty of Jesus is that He comes into my mess, right in the middle of my tendency for cynicism, my insecurity, my idols, my lack of faith, my choosing sin over Jesus, and then trying to manage it all without Him. He reminds me that He still pursues me, He specifically seeks me out to love and redeem over and over. He could look at how awful we all are and not pursue anyone, but He doesn’t. He goes after each and everyone of us individually, and I am so glad He does. How beautiful that He still goes after the one lost sheep?
When I feel like I can’t make a difference, that things are just too messed up and I am just one person, I have to remember the beauty of still pursuing. I have to remember that I can’t actually do anything, but Jesus can do everything. He can restore a girl’s worth, a child’s home, give dignity and grace. And He still does regardless of the numbers or measure of difference because He loves each and every one of us. He loves each of us enough to fight this broken world to rescue just one.
He continues to show me how He pursues me and I too often don’t give it the weight it deserves. I have to acknowledge and cherish above all else the beauty of this pursuit, of this great Love, so I can do the same for others. I pray for these horrendous issues terrorizing so many, but more so I pray that we would never stop fiercely pursuing the victims they way Jesus does, even for just one.