Embrimaoma is a Greek word that means moved, stirred, and angry. Embrimaoma is the opposite of apathy, it means you are moved to care.

Pain moves us to care. Most great movements in history were started by pain. I still remember the pain I felt first seeing the conditions in Haiti. As I walked into a village with my brand new friend Kiki, I remember my heartbreak when I saw where he lived. His home was actually only half of the house we entered, separated from another family by just a curtain. The walls were crumbling in spots, the metal roof full of holes.

Over the years I have been approached easily a dozen times by a desperate mother with a baby in her arms. “Pran li” they say, take him. The eyes of a desperate mother are not easily forgotten. Even before I knew Creole I could understand what they were saying to me, just by looking in their eyes. Embrimaoma. The mothers were angry, so angry they were stirred to action. So moved they would hand over their child if it meant they had a chance at a better life.

I remember the pain in the eyes of a young mother with a toddler lying at her feet and a dying baby in her arms. She was poor, unable to provide basic nutrition for her baby, and the baby was dying because of it. I was moved and angry on her behalf. There was little I could do to change the outcome, but I look back on that day hoping she saw embrimaoma. Hopefully she was comforted by the caring, by the righteous anger that she should not have to endure that pain, that loss of a precious baby.

It is not easy to feel this emotion, this movement to care. It is easier to become apathetic, to feel that you can’t really change anything anyway so you might as well not try. But, as I tell my kids all the time- easy things don’t equal good things. Generally the best thing is not the easy one.

Open your heart to be moved to care, don’t shut down. There are needs all around us, be moved to show compassion, be moved to love.

I learned this word in a recent sermon by Pastor Nate. I pray this encourages you today. You should check out his blog. It’s full of wisdom and it will challenge you.

Are you moved to help Haiti? Or maybe to travel there and just see, just see if you will be moved? Contact us here.


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