Romans 8:26 – In certain ways we are weak, but the Spirit is here to help us. For example, when we don’t know what to pray for, the Spirit prays for us in ways that cannot be put into words.
Gratitude Day 785
The Russian War in Ukraine began 236 days ago. Nearly eight months ago. While we can find daily updates about what has happened since the Russian invasion began, please watch this video. When Hubby Rick and I watched it, our hearts broke. The awfulness of this situation is difficult and impossible. It becomes much more real hearing the Ukrainian people share their personal experiences.
Could humans really do this?
This searing question stays with me.
There are many things that happen in this world for which we have no words or ability to explain or understand. They have happened in the past. Wars have devastated families, countries and history. It seems unfathomable that these situations would exist yet today.
Personally, this war is one of those situations where I lack adequate words. I don’t get it. I can’t understand. The families, the communities, the people’s lives who will never be the same; I cannot fathom. My heart became sad as the Father described performing 200 funerals since April. The emotional capacity to do this? Beyond my comprehension. But the Father is right: God knows the names of the 75 people that could not be identified.
There are no adequate words to express compassion. This is one of those times when our best response is simply to stutter because whatever we say will feel shallow. The anger, the hollowness, the questioning about whether to go on … these are all very real emotions that should take our breath away.
After Hubby Rick and I finished watching this, all of our “problems” suddenly felt insignificant. Petty, almost, compared to what these Ukrainian people are living through. What do I have to complain about compared to losing all of your immediate family?
So, what CAN we do, those of us who live half of a globe away? It feels like very little and yet, out of pure compassion for these people, don’t we want to do something?
We can donate to organizations that are providing relief efforts to the people of Ukraine. I suggest donating through an organization that you are confident gets 100% of the resources directly to the people. One such organization is UMCOR, the United Methodist Committee on Relief. Every donation made to UMCOR for Ukraine will go directly to assisting the people. You can find out more information here: https://umcmission.org/umcor/ukraine/. There are other organizations where all donations go directly to those in need as well.
Of course, we can pray. In fact, this is the most important thing we can do. Why? Because it will take an act of God to reverse this situation, in my opinion.
What should we pray for? Peace. Resolution. Protection and safety.
What if you do not feel you have the right words to pray? This is OK as well. In fact, we are assured in the scripture passage above that when we do not have words to pray, we need not worry. But the Holy Spirit knows our heart and will step in and pray for us.
What a wonderful backup system God has. When words fail us, God already has it covered.
Most of us will not be able to go to Ukraine or a surrounding area to help. Yet, we can offer resources and prayers to the best of our ability. And pray for those who are able to go into these areas and offer support and resources.
We can also share this video, this story, with others and enlist their help in providing resources and prayers. It is easy for us Americans to move unto whatever news story is at the top of our news feed to take our attention. May we remember that the situation in Ukraine continues and one that should remain near the top of our prayer lists.
Yes, there are people in our communities, country and areas who are struggling. We can and should offer support for them as well. I pray that we will keep these folks in our hearts and prayers as well. God loves them. God knows their names. They need God’s grace just like we do.
For the safety and security that I am granted every day, I am very grateful.
Loving God – We hear stories and situations like these from Ukraine and we shake our heads and wonder if humans could really do these things. Unfortunately, they do and it is a stark reminder that evil is very present and alive in our world today. We lift up those who are making these terrible decisions to continue to pursue people who are just trying to live ordinary, everyday lives. Hear our prayers for a peaceful resolution to this situation. Allow people to be compassionate and grace-filled and chose not to do these awful things. May our prayers help sustain those who lack adequate words to pray aloud. Amen.
If this post touched you, I invite you to share it.