God rocked my world and my heart 11 years ago by the life and testimony of one incredibly precious and powerful woman of our generation, Heidi Baker. As a result of hearing her speak one evening at a conference about intimacy with God, I cried out to the Lord to know Him MORE, and as a result, He shook me, freed me, and set me on fire for Him with a love far greater than I had ever known in my 40+ years of being a Christian and walking with Him.
I became a lover of God consumed with the desire to always experience His Presence, hear His voice, and see His glory revealed.
One of the greatest things I learned from Heidi’s testimony is that God is looking for passionate lovers who will lay down their lives for Him. Lovers who will be so filled with His love that they cannot say “No” to anything He asks of them. Lovers who will love so sacrificially that it won’t even seem like a sacrifice because they are so passionately in love with Him. Lovers who won’t merely be content to have a good feeling in their hearts, but who will rock their world with what they do.
Because love looks like something.
For Heidi and her husband, Rolland, missionaries in Mozambique, love looks like taking in thousands of children off of the streets and out of the dumps, and caring for them. She is their beloved Mama Aida. Children who had nothing to eat were given food. Children who needed someone to care for them received that care. Little girls who were reduced to selling their bodies for enough money to buy a can of pop were rescued and taught that they were deserving of honor and respect. Children who desperately needed to be hugged and held, were embraced with arms of love. Children who needed healing and miracles both for their bodies and for their souls received God’s transforming work in their lives for His glory.
How does a person take in 10,000 children? I mean, that’s like totally mind boggling crazy!
She did this by stopping for the one. One by one.
And because Jesus showed her that there would always be enough, she could boldly go to the brothels, dumps, and streets to pick up dirty, ragged, forgotten, unwanted children, one by one, and bring them home.
We may sometimes feel overwhelmed by the vast numbers of people needing help, ministries to support, and situations everywhere we turn that need help. There are desperate needs in our own communities and in our neighborhoods. In the case of helping with child sponsorship, we can be overwhelmed by the sheer numbers of children who need sponsors… and by the many children that some of us wish that we could sponsor.
While it is unlikely that very many of us can move to a foreign country to take care of the vast numbers of homeless and orphaned children, we can come alongside organizations like Compassion to help with one child. And then maybe one more. One by one. We can ask God to prepare our hearts to stop for the one… the one in front of us… the one that He puts on our hearts. As Heidi says, It’s not complicated to stop for the one.
“I pray for radical love to just rock this generation, God. I ask for love to just come in and stretch every heart, God. Show them what love looks like, God… so that they would stop for the one every single day of their lives.” Heidi Baker
What might radical love look like in our lives today? It may be as simple as stopping for the one who calls you on the phone and needs a listening ear… when you’re busy doing something that you would rather do. It may mean stopping for the one at work who is overwhelmed and helping them with a specific need… when you’d rather not get involved. It may mean preparing a meal today for a neighbor… when you had a fun activity that you wanted to do instead. It may mean stopping to pray with a stranger in need of healing… stepping totally out of your comfort zone. Radical love may mean giving away a sizable money gift to someone in need today. It may mean giving a hug to one who is lonely or speaking a kind word to one who is weary… giving to others rather than focusing on what you need.
Whatever that act of radical love looks like for today, it will probably be a call to do something other than what we feel like doing. It may be something that we need to step out in faith, in some way, to accomplish.
What about you? Is your heart open to say YES! to anything the Lord asks of you? Are you willing to sacrifice some of the pleasant comforts that you surround your life with so that children in poverty can have a taste of radical, transforming love in their lives? You may already be living a very radical life in the ministries that you are involved with, or how you serve others. I am here to challenge you to ask yourself if you have become comfortable with the level that you are being radical. Are you willing to go further in radical love? Are you wiling to stop for one more? Who is the one God would have you stop for today?
Here is one.
Axel David is 4 years old, and his birthday is September 15, 2010. He lives with his grandmother, and there are 3 children in this family. At home, his duties include carrying water and gathering firewood, and his grandmother is sometimes employed as a laborer. Axel is not attending school because he is too young, but he attends church activities and Bible class regularly. Soccer, running and playing group games are his favorite activities. His Compassion project is a brand new project in Honduras, called Tu Reino Aqui… Your Kingdom Here.
Maybe you are already sponsoring one or more children, and you feel stretched. Find out if God is calling you to sacrifice in other ways so that you can stretch again to embrace yet another child and sponsor this one for $38/month. If He is calling you to step out in faith to sponsor your first child, or to take in another child, He says that there will always be enough.
If you are the one who feels called to sponsor Axel, contact me here.
And as with the other children I am advocating for from Tu Reino Aqui, here is a gift for Axel’s new sponsor. I will email you the full resolution of this photo to use in writing a special letter to this precious boy.