I don’t believe that one has to look very far to see what is missing. The evidence is everywhere and it is clear. No matter where you go in this world, there is one common missing element among humanity: the need to be loved.
I was keenly aware of it during my first trip to Mexico in the summer of 2001. We were working in Matamoras, a city labeled as the most polluted city in the world in the late 90’s by National Geographic. You could smell the stench of human waste at every turn.
We had traveled to the outskirts of Matamoras to feed children; it was a Thursday afternoon and it was hot. The dirt streets were cluttered with large gaping trenches made by semi’s that had driven through in the rain.
It was this day each week that these children would get what they considered a gourmet meal; not the usual rice and beans, but burritos and enchiladas. I believe that the children looked forward to Thursdays, kind of like when we were young and we knew we were going somewhere at the end of the week and every day we would ask, “Is today the day we go? Is it today?”.
Before we could finish dishing out the first serving of food, kids began asking for more. The cries for seconds penetrated the deepest part of my heart. I remember reaching over the table toward this one kid, giving him a second helping, and fighting the tears.
I had never experienced such need in my life, and I was shocked by their culture.
Hundreds of miles away, in my own culture I see starvation of the heart, the soul, the need to be loved, to be heard. People cry out, “Love me, discover me, see me!” and I want to hand them a plate so bad.
John writes, “Dear children, let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions” (1 John 3:18)
The words each other aren’t selective. This verse covers all humanity, because all humanity wants to be loved.
Carrying out this calling takes a person who will see beyond themselves, become culturally shocked by what is happening in their own town, and begin giving way to what the Creator created them to do.
Love needs a catalyst. We’re not called to rescue the world; Jesus has already done that. We’re called to show our neighbors love. We’re called to give mercy to those who need mercy. We’re called to share the truth of the gospel and make disciples. Will you become the catalyst that Love is looking for?