Monday, November 01, 2004

A Mother's Heart/A Pastor's Heart

Working with young missionaries as I do, my job is both to pastor and to mother. I guide them and lead them, help identify their gifts and hold them accountable for their use, supervise them and evaluate them, listen to their triumphs and their struggles, hear their confessions and their prayer requests. I mediate their conflicts, laugh at their jokes, cry with them and pray for them. I really do love them, maybe not right from the start, but as I spend time with them, as I get frustrated with them, as I marvel at their idealism and wonder at their pigheadedness, I grow to view them with the fierce affection of a mother. Today one of my guys is struggling through a broken heart...not over a romance, but a friendship that does not have the level of intimacy, accountability and transparency that he seeks. This young man is tender-hearted and blunt, passionate yet distracted, idealistic yet cynical. His hurts run deep, his energy is infectious. As I was praying with him today, I cried because I feel like his mother and when he is hurt, I hurt for him. I am also disappointed in his behavior during a recent fight with his friend, and wish that his maturity would catch up with his passion. Lord, have mercy and bless him with Your peace and supernatural guidance.


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