Quote of the Day: “Those who are happiest are those who do the most for others.” ― Booker T. Washington
I have written about missionary depression before, but today I am not talking about what has been given up or sacrificed or things that are done without. Today, I am talking about the depression that comes from not doing enough for others. Many, many people do nothing for others just for themselves--they have their own hell. What we, Karen, John, and I, all suffer from is the knowledge that there is so much to be done and we have so little resources and strength to do what is needed. In the movie "Shindler's List" at the very end, Shindler notices the wedding band he still wears and bemoans the fact that if he had sold it, he could have saved even more lives. This is the depression that we feel. If only we had a little more money, if only we had a little more strength, if only we knew more about how to help, then we could feel like we have accomplished something. We do what we can with what we have, but we know we could do more. We can't raise funds in the U.S. from here and can't afford the trip to go back to do just that because we need the money here. Many other missionaries have shared this feeling from Mother Teresa to David Livingstone and many here now feel it, too, but it doesn't make us feel any better. Me must content ourselves with knowing that we have made the attempt, we have given that one cup of water, that little bit of food, have given some clothes to those who needed them. We have helped in a very, very small way to have given to the "least of these" and can only pray that we will be judged not on what we failed to do, but rather on what little we were able to do. It makes us sad, but God sends smiles on the faces of children and the few we can help. Those smiles keep us going through the roughest of times. Unlike the quote above, we cannot do the most for others which keeps us from being among the happiest, but we do what we can for others and must take solace it that. God finds ways to sustain even those of us who can do so little when there is so much need. God bless those who do even more. Keep us in your prayers.