Journals
Posted on November 22, 2017 Why I do what I do…
Mercy González-Barnes
[pie chart]79%Support Pledged
[world map] Iberoamerica and the Caribbean Iberoamerica and the Caribbean
Theological Education Theological Education

 

“The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.
            Matthew 25.40 NIV

Why I do what I do…

I was about sixteen years old at a youth retreat in Puerto Rico. The speaker had finished and then there was an altar call. I started to pray for all of those “others” that needed to hear the call of God. I prayed for God to touch lives. I felt spiritually fine and was surprised when suddenly I felt a weight on my shoulders. I started to weep as I thought, “But, God, what do you want from me?” I heard it clearly in my thoughts, “People need to know that I love them.” I responded, “I know that, God, but what do you want from me?” The rest of the service went on and I refused to respond to God’s voice. I thought to myself, “I’m just being emotional because of the service; this will go away.”

Well, three days later I was at home and the feeling of weight, of a burden, kept increasing. I didn’t know what to do with that feeling. I spoke to my brother and he didn’t take me seriously and I remember crying and saying that this was for real. That weekend, God had given me a gift; it was the burden of knowing God’s love for each of us. How God yearns to fill our lives with purpose and love. As life has gone by, God has continued to show me his great love and faithfulness as he walks by my side but also as God works with each of the students that I have had the blessing of teaching.

Why do I teach?

 

 

I teach because of Israel and Gaby, because of Iliana and Eliza, because of Dahlita and Alonso and many others. Each of these names represent a story of redemption, of God’s love and how these persons are being used to make a difference in their community.

I teach because of the Great Cloud of Witnesses of Hebrews 11 and 12. These flawed characters show us what it means to live by faith.

I teach because of the many nameless women and men that have changed the world throughout time. They lived in times of persecution and famine, they lived in times in which the church and government were intertwined and the roles confused. They lived in times in which they learned to be advocates for the indigenous people and during times of world wars. And they live in times like today.

I teach because I have no choice, because there is a burden, a weight that I carry, a voice that I hear that says, “People need to know that I love them.”