If Not Us Then Who
Updated: Sep 12
“Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord's purpose that prevails” ~ Proverbs 19:21
I didn’t start listening to Christian music until just before my oldest daughter was born (nearing 9 years ago). Before then the only time I listened to songs that spoke of God was in country songs. But God wasn’t the focus in those songs. It was usually a spoken culmination of difficulties in their lives - marriage and relationships, separation from family, or ways of life.
Christian music is very different than what I’d come across when I was young and searching for a station on the radio. The first time I came across a current Christian radio station I was blown away with the music, the depths of the songs, and their level of commitment to Christ.
I was influenced by Christian songs that ask God to bring them down to their knees. They ask to suffer so they fall to their knees humbled and asking for Gods help/mercy. Tenth Avenue North sings “Don't stop the madness... don't stop the pain". When so many of us ask God to prevent suffering here are people asking for the suffering to bring them closer to God and His glory through that prayer.
Hearing these songs made me understand that my middle class comfort wasn’t what life was supposed to be. God doesn’t tell us that we will live rich lives without suffering. 2 Timothy 3:12, for instance, says “In fact, everyone who wants to live a godly life in Jesus Christ will be persecuted”. It then depends on what you do with that suffering that will determine your outlook and place in life. It will depend on your perspective on what brings you to feel joy, happiness, and what brings your compassion to action.
“You’re meant to get fired up when seeing injustice. You’re meant to get angry when you see suffering. You’re meant to grow and change your mind as you do.”
We’re living in the time of me. The time of mine. The more we think we deserve things is when we start to diversify our continuity. We think that our lives or the lives of our family members are worth more than others because, well, they’re ours. That’s when we hit the danger zone of disconnect. Our treasures are not here. We’ve been told that many times. We’re here to do God’s will - no matter how difficult that might be. If we look at the Apostles or all the saints we see a dedication to service. Jesus didn’t live a comfortable life. He didn’t just accept things as they were because the humans decided it was the status quo. He didn’t ask His followers to sit back and enjoy - He asked them to give up and sacrifice. The Apostles left their families to follow Jesus. All of them lost their lives in His name. There is a long list of child saints and many stories we hear of bravery from children, teens, and young adults that show us that choosing Christ doesn’t protect us from the loss or sorrow that we don’t understand, or that we feel is wrong or unfair.
God’s work is not always fun. It’s not always easy. It can be heart wrenching. It can and will make you angry. Sometimes at people you love and that you respect. Sometimes it will make you change the relationships that you once valued. Sometimes it will make you change your mind on things that were once a part of your self and identity. That’s ok. You’re meant to get fired up when seeing injustice. You’re meant to get angry when you see suffering. You’re meant to grow and change your mind as you do. Matthew West sings that when we’re yelling at God and asking Him to do something - God says “I did. I created you”. We all have this immense power within us. If we put that together with everyone else’s we can change the dynamics of our society. Not just by words but of real change. It’s throwing our match into the bush fire. On its own it’s a small flame but together it’s consuming.
We have to get out of our comfort zones. Growing and listening to your heart and conscience (the Holy Spirit) will change our minds or allow us to see things from His perspective. The act of putting down that ego and accepting that you were wrong or misguided is one of the most powerful things you can do. Recognizing that you can do more, sacrifice more, live with less and that it will fill you more than anything else in your life has - is powerful. It’s KonMari-ing your soul. God wants you to be fierce in His love, fierce in His joy and fierce in His justice. But fierce doesn’t mean harming or towering over in rage. On the contrary, it’s focused, calm, and guiding just like the Good Shepherd Himself.
This journey starts when we become prayerful and aware of ourselves and our surroundings. It may spark from a sermon you’ve heard, a book you’ve read, a song you’ve heard or a person you’ve spoken to. Even a blog you’ve read (haha). God speaks to us in so many subtle ways that become less subtle the more we listen. Fear often holds us back because we don’t want Him to ask more of us. But to connect ourselves to the bush fire you have to first make that initial spark. God asks us to be His voice here and share in the goodness with our fellow man. Let’s rewind, step back and visualize what we can be doing to care for the poor, the sick, the young, the elderly, and any other marginalized person or persons. We can’t change the world by ourselves but we can do our part to collectively and prayerfully work towards that goal one spark at a time.
About: Sosie Matosian resides in Virginia with her husband, three children and two dogs. She has her degree in Biblical Studies from University of Northwestern with additional emphasis and certificate in the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd. She is passionate about sharing her faith with others and brings a personal perspective to the struggles one might face in their journey walking to and with Christ.