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Wednesday, February 11, 2015

For My Brothers and Sisters in the Ukraine


When you are experiencing divorce, there is a major splintering of the heart, and couples sometimes squabble and go to court over the littlest of aggravations.  It can feel like you whole world is falling apart, right?

Sometimes we need some perspective.  And today, I would suggest recognizing the struggle in the Ukraine can help us gain some of that perspective.  I particularly selected that region for several reasons, on of which is that there are several individuals in the Ukraine who read my blog, so they are part of my own personal world.

I have had the privilege of meeting several Ukrainians over the years.  I recently saw another news report about the turmoil experienced with the Russian invasion of the Eastern region of the Ukraine.  One of the pastors I have met from over there was telling about his city, which has already fallen victim to the Russian onslaught.  A burned out church, bombed apartment complexes, living without electricity and running water, as well as the struggle of finding food enough to eat are the descriptions of what life was like in his town when he left.  It is very sad.

When you know that other people live on a daily basis wondering if they will have any food for the day, whether a rocket shell might land on their house or apartment or whether their church will still be there this Sunday, then somehow who gets the silverware doesn’t seem so important. 

Divorce forces us to deal with extremely tedious and mundane things, as the settlement pushes forward and court day approaches.  It helps to remember they are just mundane things.  During my divorce, the way I said it was, “It’s all just stuff.”  What was really important to me were things like wedding vows now abandoned, or time as a family shattered, or the opportunities to spend time with my children now cut in half.  And yet…

I believe all those things are important.  

I also believe that even then, compared with what my brothers and sisters in the Ukraine are experiencing, I think we get caught up so intensely we lose sight of several very important things.  

Like the fact that, though divorced, we still have freedom to worship in church any Sunday without hindrance (at least in most churches…sometimes we may need to find a different one after a divorce), while in the Ukraine at this time, the church may or may not be left intact by Sunday.  

Time with children may now be restricted, but our children are alive, and healthy and safe at home, without daily worry of falling bombs.  

We may lose half of our household belongings, but there are still some of them in our possession; they aren't buried beneath the rubble of warfare.  

Most of us don’t lose our jobs in a divorce, but in the Ukraine, factories cannot operate without electricity, markets cannot sell produce that doesn't arrive and medical care isn't provided without a hospital. 

Feeding our children is always a priority, but imagine feeding your child in Eastern Ukraine a midst the battle areas where food is scarce and utilities services are disrupted by war.  

Hard as divorce is, there are things in this world that are much worse, wouldn’t you say?

For my brothers and sisters in the breadbasket of the east called Ukraine, from a simple writer in the breadbasket of the United States called Kansas

Know that many of us here in the U.S. are praying for you, and admire your courage in the face of tremendous suffering.  With all you have going on in your country, I am humbled to think some of you take time to read this little blog.  God bless and keep you, and may your witness for Christ be great.

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