Posted by: An American Expat | July 15, 2010


Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.- Leo Buscaglia

Today, I was once again reminded that there are those who are forgotten among me.  My extended family and I took a walk down to the local park to let the children play.  While there, a young boy came running into the play area.  He was loud and right from the start you could tell that he was seeking attention.  He climbed up straight to the top of the play set and sat there as if he owned all beneath him.  He obnoxiously picked on some of the other kids and called out to some of the adults.  When they wouldn’t answer him he just mutter “retard” under his breath and looked for someone else to gain recognition  from. 

At first, I was annoyed at this young man.  He was saying things I didn’t want my children to hear and it appeared to me that he wasn’t safe to be around.  My sister was clearing reading the same thing, because she quickly decided that we should all leave.  However, something at my heart tugged for the boy. 

He ran past me at some point, and the smell of urine reeked on his clothing.  My heart sank.  “Who takes care of you?”  I thought.  I expect that no one is taking care of him.  I assume that he spends lonely nights looking for attention from someone….anyone.  He looked around 13 or so, but acted like he was 9.   It was clear that no one had taught him how to act around other kids: what is appropriate to say, what is kind, how to respect others.   Still sadder is the fact that he may not know a single person that really loves him.  Oh, I know, that these are mostly assumptions.  But don’t be so foolish to thing that it is not true for someone.  And don’t be so blind to think that you haven’t met that person.  That person seeking for guidance.  That person looking for love.  There are people like that all over the world.  They are forgotten.

I think sometimes it is easier to forget about people like that.  The obnoxious people who need extra love, extra attention, extra support and extra patience.  All while being rude and thoughtless.  In a world as busy as ours we run out of all the “extras” just trying to get things done with our own families.  We are tired, we are busy, and we don’t have room on our plates for anything else.  Yes, it is easier to forget.

But sometimes we are reminded, like I was today.  God said in James that  pure religion is to visit the orphans and the widows.  I think we lost that somewhere amongst the church.  Somewhere along the road of life we thought the orphans would be in better hands in orphanages and the widows in retirement homes.  We let the government take over our responsibility. (Here me clearly on this: my point is not against these things, Jonathan and I worked for a children’s home.  My point is that we as the body of Christ  should be doing more).

Now, one could argue that this boy I met today wasn’t an orphan .  But what, may I ask, is a parent then?  Over three-fourths of the kids in children’s homes are not orphans in the truest sence of the meaning.  Their mother or father is alive.  They may even have full-time jobs.  But these men and women  are NOT parents. It is heart breaking to know there are children around us that aren’t being taken care of and it is not because their parents are dead.

I can’t tell you what I think you should do about it.  I can’t even tell you what I think I should do about it. This is something God has to tell a person. And I don’t believe that God will ask everyone to do exactly the same thing. 

I will tell  you this; I have been commanded to love everyone.  I have been commanded to have kindness and compassion.  I will not be so quick to respond in my heart as to being “uncomfortable” or “annoyed” at those who make me uncomfortable and annoyed.  I will seek God to fill me with his spirit.  I will search his word to give me strength.  I will ask God what He want me to do.  And I will pray for this young man I met today-and pray that I never forget.



  1. Wow, Liz! Again powerful, true words…
    It’s hard sometimes to love the unlovely. Sometimes I too get so busy in “family” that I forget about others…outside my home, my church…
    The ones that need Jesus, that are craving something to fill that void in their lives. Thank you for reminding that I need to use every opportunity to be a witness!
    ~Jess S.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: