“…because He cares for you.”
1 Peter 5:7b
Occasionally I work at the local behavioral health hospital. Here is where one will often encounter the “worst” at their “worst”—an experience that can certainly cause a crisis of faith. This day was no exception. Part of my responsibility was to lead the children’s therapy group. Of the three on the unit, two were girls. Both had been sexually abused. Both were depressed. Both had wanted to commit suicide. So both were now in the hospital. And neither was older than 10 years old. The prayer of my heart was this: “God, if nothing else, in this brief 45 minutes that our lives will touch, please let these little girls know they are loved.” It’s unlikely I’ll ever see either again. But their faces and stories are forever imprinted on my heart.
Once group was over and therapy notes were written, it was time for me to call it a day. Outside, the skies were gray and a cold rain fell. My heart was very sad. I could feel the heavy cloak of weariness that often accompanies my calling. As I got in the car, I turned on the radio to a country music station. (I know… just go ahead and pour salt in the wound. But I like country music!) A new song by Brooks and Dunn came on. The title: God Must Be Busy. I had heard it a time or two before and had questioned the lyrics then. And while I know the duo is likely not trying to make a theological statement with their song, it still just didn’t sit right with me. Part of the lyrics include: I know in the big picture, I’m just a speck of sand. And God’s got better things to do than look out for one man…God must be busy.
As the song was playing, I was thinking. And as it ended, I began talking. To God, that is. I told Him how I know that He is never too busy, not even for the smallest need I might have. Scripture tells me that He’s engraved my name on His hand (Isa. 49). He created my inmost being and ordained all the days for me before one of them ever came to be (Psalm 139). And He gave His only Son—the perfect Lamb of God—as a sacrifice for my sin. There is no way He is too busy, not even for my smallest need.
Yes, you ask, but what about all the suffering? You’re right. That’s probably the most asked theological question there is. And the most difficult to answer. I know. I wrote a 20-page paper once on the goodness of God and the problem of pain. But that’s not what this moment was about. It was about knowing that God is never too busy; not one of His children is insignificant in His eyes. And this day, a day when I felt so weary from the work He’s asked me to do, I needed to know I was significant. I needed a touch from my God. Just a simple reminder that He is near, He is good, He loves me, and He’s with me in the struggle. And that’s what He gave me.
My friend Laurie and I decided not to let the rain stop us, so we headed to the park to run not long after I made it home. The rain for the most part had ceased. The park was very quiet. Not many folks are as foolish…um, or dedicated, as we are to our running. We had been running for a while when we turned the corner and headed down the stretch that borders a cemetery on one side and thick forest on the other. All of the sudden, we saw two huge deer with beautiful white, fuzzy tails frolicking on the other side of the fence. We stopped in our tracks as we watched the larger of the two, in a seemingly effortless movement, leap over the fence and bound across the path in front of us. Not far behind was the second creature, almost flying through the air after her friend. It was the most beautiful thing ever. To some, it would probably seem very inconsequential and almost elementary. But to me, it was a taste of heaven. An answer to my prayer. For a moment, it literally took my breath away.
All evening, I continued to ponder the moment, which I know was a special gift just for me… (because you see, I know I am much more than just a simple speck of sand). I thought about what it represented, what God was speaking to my heart. Why did it feel so beautiful, so holy? Ah, yes. Innocence and freedom. Something I see far too little of in this world, particularly in this ministry which God has called me to. More of what I encounter tends to be innocence lost and bondage of all varieties. It was like God was whispering, “One day, child. And one day soon. Innocence and freedom will be restored. So keep pushing through. Keep loving hurting people. Keep believing. I’m right here. And I am never too busy for you.”
And, my friend, neither is He ever too busy for you. So remember, give all your worries and cares to God, for He cares about you.
Prayer requests & praise reports
- Pray for the clients of Restoration Place. The client population currently ranges in age from 11 years old to 57 years old. They are single, married, divorced, separated. The issues they come with are just as diverse. Yet they all need one thing: the healing touch of God. Please pray to that end. We praise God for each young girl or woman referred.
- Pray for Cindy as she is continuing to grow as a counselor. Pray for wisdom, discernment, strength, and energy.
- Please continue to pray for the financial provision of the ministry so that these women may still receive affordable counseling.
- God is answering our prayer for additional board members. We look forward to sharing with you some incredible stories of all He’s doing!
Board Member Spotlight
This month our board member spotlight is on a young woman who has been part of our team since August 2007: Megan Smith. Megan is a 2001 graduate of N.C. State with a degree in biology. She currently works as a pharmaceutical sales representative with Merck & Co., where strong teamwork has been critical for success. Megan has served as a project team leader, and her leadership skills have been evident as she has joined the board of directors.
When asked why she was interested in serving on the ministry’s board, Megan replied, “When Cindy first told me about Restoration Place, I felt that affordable counseling for women was a great need in Greensboro. Having sought out counseling myself when I moved to Greensboro, I was overwhelmed by the cost and the options. I am passionate about women and their growth in Christ and I believe that RPM is an important means of loving both women in Christ and women who are searching.”
Megan is a member at Grace Community Church. She has gone on a short-term mission trip to Uganda and has succeeded Cindy in her role as women’s Bible study leader for the Tuesday Night Group.
What clients are saying…
“It seems God is right in the midst of us, and boy is that exciting and exactly what I need to know. I can’t express how thankful I am that God has put you in my life to walk with me through this time.”
–37-year-old single woman
“I feel a lot better after that praying session we did. I think it helped a lot because it was a sense of being freed from the past. I am so happy that I have found you and that you are so understanding, especially when I can be as stubborn as a mule. But I feel like the walls are coming down slowly and I’m looking at things differently with your guidance. So I just wanted to say thanks.”
–30-year-old single woman
“I just wanted to tell you how great I feel (today). Your guidance and prayer is helping me so much. I feel so much closer to God already. I know I can still fail, but just wanted to thank you for being there for me.” –43-year-old married woman
“Just wanted to let you know how much ‘Susie’ enjoyed her visit with you yesterday.”
–mother of 11-year-old client*
*Note: On the way to counseling ‘Susie’ told her mom, “I’m not going to say a word [in the session].” Afterward, when mom and Cindy were scheduling Susie’s next appointment, she said, “Don’t I get to come every day?!”
Please remember to use GoodSearch.com and list Restoration Place Ministries as your charity! GoodSearch is a Yahoo-powered search engine that donates half its advertising revenue to the charity its users designate. Use it just like any search engine, get quality search results, and watch the donations add up!
GoodShop.com is another way to generate revenue for RPM. It is a new online shopping mall which donates a percentage of each purchase to the ministry. Instead of going to your favorite store’s website, simply link to the site through GoodShop, so that we earn credit. Many popular stores are participating, including Target, Amazon.com, ebay, Macy’s, Office Depot, and iTunes! There is no additional cost to you!
Just go to www.goodsearch.com and be sure to enter Restoration Place Ministries as the charity you want to support.