When Ruins Sing...

Where my faith and creativity collide! A freedom freelancer, prayerful painter and clarion for Christ.

Compassion: Compass + Passion (Week 38)

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Compassion: Compass + Passion (Week 38)

Story behind the painting:

This weeks painting is a poster I painted for a Kairos walk.

Kairos Prison Ministry International, Inc. (Kairos) is a Christian faith based ministry which addresses the spiritual needs of incarcerated men, women, youth, and their families. By sharing the love and forgiveness of Jesus Christ, Kairos hopes to change hearts, transform lives and impact the world. 

Kairos Vision

A community spiritually freed from the effects of imprisonment
reaching all impacted by incarceration, through the love, hope,
and faith found in Jesus Christ.

Kairos Mission

The mission of the Kairos Prison Ministry is to share the transforming
love and forgiveness of Jesus Christ to impact the hearts and
lives of incarcerated men, women and youth, as well as
their families, to become loving and productive citizens of their communities.

http://www.mykairos.org/about.html (**for more information on Kairos Prison Ministry)

I was blessed to go to Costa Rica earlier this year on a prison ministry mission trip.  I experienced the power and presence of the Holy Spirit like never before. HE left an indelible beauty mark on my heart of flesh that filled me, yet left me hungry and thirsty for more of HIM!  God is faithful and will always respond with a resounding YES when we seek more of HIM.

I am on the outside prayer team for a local Kairos walk in October.  That means I get the privilege of linking arms with brothers and sisters in Christ on my knees interceding for 42 “men in white” and their families and for the Kairos inside team.

The extravagant grace of God in my life still awes me.  Committed to never letting that grace go wasted, I am eternally grateful for opportunities to pay that grace forward. Prayers and painting are the conduits of compassion God has given me to give that gift of grace.

Take-away Treasure:

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I have been consumed with compassion lately.

As I typed that last sentence, I got a fresh realization of how awesome that consuming fire is.  Compassion is not passive. Compassion gets it’s hands dirty, because it is “heaven bent” on reaching out to the lost, to the lonely, to the marginalized. Compassion is drawn to the fringes, because God is close to the brokenhearted.

Compassion calls HOME wherever God is.

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http://www.homeboyindustries.org

I keep a running list on my phone of books I want to read.  Most of the time I do not even know what the book is about.  I simply add the titles to my list when someone I know, love and respect makes mention of them.

“Tattoos on the Heart” was on my list and I was looking for an audio book to listen to, while making a day trip to see my 20 year old in college.

Little did I know, my heart was about to get some “GOOD INK.” (Just in case you did not know, INK is slang for tattoo:)

This ink is written on a heart of flesh and not stone! (Ezekiel 36:26 VOICE: “I will plant a new heart and new spirit inside of you. I will take out your stubborn, stony heart and give you a willing, tender heart of flesh.”)

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Father Gregory Boyle (“Tattoos on the Heart”) embodies living a life that envisions and embraces lives that are not his.  He is simply a man compelled by Christ to extend compassion to all; so he does.

Love does!

I am not going to walk you through the book.  I so hope you read it for yourself.  I can promise you will never be the same, and all the better for it.  I am going to share some of my thoughts concerning compassion that were stirred up, as “ink” still settles into my heart!

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If you follow my blog regularly, you already know that I am on staff at a local inner city ministry.  I journal write with teen girls. God initiated this journal writing journey through the inspiration of the movie, Freedom Writers, and the song, Unwritten, by Natasha Beddingfield.  The founder of Lincoln Village Ministries, Mark Stearns, is a friend and mentor to me and many.  He is a walking epistle and scripture overflows freely from him, because it is the air that he breathes.

Why am I telling you this and what does it have to do with compassion?

Wait for it…

Several posters grace the walls of Mark’s office.  These posters are the fabric of his life.  They consist of the verses that have saved his life and feed him daily from the inside out.

One of the posters is entitled, My Compass, followed by a series of 20 Scriptures that point him “True North.”  True North is Jesus.  True North is Heaven.  True North is our hope for the future and our promise for TODAY!  True North is “Thy Kingdom to come” and “Thy Kingdom is here.”  As followers of Christ, we carry HIS KINGDOM within us (Luke 17:21) everywhere we go.

(**Mark gave each of us a ring several years ago with Luke 17:21 inscribed on it. They are  reminders that we always have everything we need to do everything God called us to within our hearts.)

Mark encouraged us to memorize the Compass, writing it on our hearts until it became our own.  In 2012 I trained for a half marathon and I would do my long runs holding a piece of paper in my hand. That paper held My Compass and that Compass now holds me. That piece of paper literally fell apart at the end of that training season but its legacy still holds me together.

I first recited My Compass noting every scripture address following each verse.  I was so proud of myself as I uttered it word for word, book, chapter and verse.  Then Mark suggested we make it personal.  Omit the addresses and insert your name.

Well shoot, that stumped up my flow.  I had a rhythm; I had it down!

But God is not so interested in us having “it down” if it is not what “comes up” in our everyday, ordinary lives.

What took me a few weeks to “memorize” has been “tattooed on my heart” over the past 3 years.  These verses are the last words I hear before I trail off to sleep and they are the words I taste before my feet hit the floor each morning.  They are permanent; they are seasoned like my grandmothers cast iron skillet, and they are MINE.

But

they can be yours too, if you want:)

“My Compass”

I freely admit that I live on this earth as a stranger and an exile. Because of my faith God is not ashamed to be called my God and in sober truth, He has prepared a city for me. And the city has no need for the sun or for the moon for the glory of the Lord illuminates it.  And the nations walk among His glory.  I looked and saw a multitude, beyond what anyone could count, from every tribe, tongue, nation and people, standing before the Throne, before the Lamb dressed in white. I will walk with Jesus and I will wear white because the victorious where white and Jesus will say my name openly in the presence of His Father and of His angels.

A day is coming when Jesus will wipe away every tear from every eye, for there will be no more death, no more sorrow and no more pain!  Therefore Jesus tells me, “Let not your heart be troubled. Believe in God and also in Me. For in My Father’s house there are many rooms and there I go to prepare a place for you.  If it was not so I would not say it. But where I am you will also be.  I know for instance that if I have this earthly dwelling that comes down like a tent, then I have a new home in heaven that was built by God and not by man.  And it is God that has planned this for us, giving us His Spirit as a guarantee for His pledge.  

Since I have a Kingdom that is unshakable, may I serve God with reverence. And since I am risen with Christ, may I set my heart on heavenly things and not the passing things of this world; for as far as this world is concerned I am dead and my true life is a hidden one in God through Christ Jesus.

In the meantime, Lord enable me to live with a due sense of responsibility, not as one who does not know the purpose and the meaning of this life but as one who does.  The enemy comes to steal, kill and destroy but You Lord cam to give life and give it in abundance.  This is that abundant eternal life, that I may know You the ONE TRUE GOD and Jesus Christ whom You sent.  Lord, you are the faithful One who called me into fellowship with Yourself; therefore, may I know, press on to know You. Your going forth is more certain than the dawn and You come to me like the spring rain, like the spring rain watering the earth. 

Lord, You look down from Your heavenly place to see if anyone understand, if anyone seeks You. You tell me that if I seek You I will find You if I search for You with all my heart, that if I draw near to You, You will draw near to me.  The nearness of my God is my good and God in His loving kindness has met, is meeting and will continue to meet with me! Amen

I have to admit that when I got personal with My Compass, I forgot the verse addresses.  However, with my friend GOOGLE, I can type in just a few words and find the exact location of the golden nugget!

In conclusion,

Compassion: Compass + Passion

I love a good word play; so, I am about to make my connection between Compass and compassion for you:

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About Katie Wilson

Where my faith and creativity collide!
A freedom freelancer, prayerful painter and clarion for Christ. #amwriting #Compel
Forgiven and Free
Living a life that says:
COME AND SEE!

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