missionary trauma

So, I don’t know if it’s missionary trauma, or pastor’s wife trauma, or just being alive in a sinful world trauma ….

It just kind of builds up, the shocking things one has to hear, witness, face. I think I handle all this pretty well; I don’t struggle with depression or sink into despair or bitterness or hopelessness. I have struggled with forgiveness, with not withdrawing emotionally.

God once convicted me of cynicism towards our rehab center, and He helped me turn from cynicism to having His hope for souls.

But it does build up.

So something cultural/personal was shocking me a few days back, and I was examining this with Vitaliy, and in a follow-up conversation, I said maybe I’d like to talk to a counselor and just make sure I’m not becoming deformed by shocking things.

And in the conversation, I was thinking about how Jesus had seen many shocking things. And how did He deal with it?

And I thought: When Jesus was being beaten, tortured, and crucified, He wasn’t feeling shock at people’s sinfulness. He just didn’t feel that. He was ready to offer forgiveness, do God’s will, and see the glory of God in what was really happening.

That insight has given me a great new level of insight and freedom. Jesus didn’t feel shock at people’s sinfulness. I personally tend to get a little bowled over by this. And I start circling back around to this topic–feelings of being shocked. And that’s what starts layering up on me–my own reaction.

But this is showing me that I can just skip the feelings of shock. They don’t serve me. I can look at that person’s life, no matter what they have just brought out of their hearts, and see that God is working in them–that they have not done worse things already, that they are God’s children and have, as such, made many good decisions, too, etc. That is seeing His glory instead of their sin.

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