One Body

July 27, 2015 - Mexico

It was a Thursday evening when his little 5-year-old self walked into the room, crying because he was hurt—physically and emotionally—by his father.  My heart broke as I watched him wipe his teary eyes and runny nose.  All I wanted to do was hug him and let him know that somebody cares.  So eventually, I placed him in my lap and held him in my arms for a while, both of us sitting in the pain.

Although this moment was filled with great hurt and brokenness, there was something really beautiful about it.  When I look back on this moment, I think about the passage in the bible that explains how we are one body in Christ.  In 1 Corinthians 12:24-26 the Apostle Paul says, “But God has so composed the body… that there may be no division in the body, but that the members may have the same care for one another.  If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together.”  As the body of Christ, we are called to suffer alongside those who are suffering—to stand in solidarity with our brothers and sisters. While I sat with the little boy in my arms, God showed me what that it looks like to be a sister in Christ.  As a sister, I didn’t necessarily need to make the boy’s problems go away (although I really wished I could).  Instead, I needed to just let him know that someone cares about him and what he’s going through.

It’s been 4 weeks since that Thursday night, and I’ve thought about it every day since then because this moment has forever changed the way I view my role as a sister in Christ.  I now think about the other parts of the body that are suffering. 

This summer, I had the opportunity to stand in solidarity with my brothers and sisters on the geographical and social fringe of Mexico City—to live and serve alongside the urban poor.  I had the honor of being physically present with them and letting them know that they are cared for.  In his book The New Friars Scott Bessenecker explains, “The very first statement Jesus ever voiced about his concern for poor, oppressed, marginalized people was when he cried out as one of them” (60).  Whether it’s the poor, the widows, the orphans, we are called to care for one another because Jesus Christ cares.  Jesus’ humble birth was the ultimate act of solidarity, and as followers of Christ we are to do likewise.  We are called to follow the example of our Savior and sit with others through their pain.

Written by Jasmine