I don't know the people in the above picture. I have no idea why they are crying or in such anguish. All I do know is that just looking at this photo should trigger a certain response within me whether I know these folks or not. It could be called sympathy or sorrow or maybe even empathy.

I have heard that sympathy is feeling another's sorrow or pain but that empathy is actually having the capability to put ourselves in another's shoes ; to be able to see and feel life from another's eyes and heart. It is a great thing to talk about but quite another to do. I don't think it happens often enough with too many of us ...myself included.

The current news story about these 200 young girls being kidnapped by a militant terrorist group is a prime example of what I mean. I don't know about you but I have been sitting in horror as I watch this agonizing story unfold on the television. Weeping parents and family members as well as some political leaders in Nigeria are beside themselves in unimaginable pain. Their little girls have been stolen away from them and will most likely be sold into slavery. We sit here gripped by the unfathomable horror of this action yet what can we do ? As normal American citizens , probably not much in the way of definitive action. We can however PRAY.

The next tricky question then is this....do we care enough to pray ? Do we ? It is hard to ernestly pray for folks who we don't personally know. That is a fact. Some stories, some situations, some crises though are of such horrific magnitude that we simply must pray about in spite of the fact that we are not personally invested in or connected to those involved.

This is one of them. When you go to pray today , please remember these girls. Please remember their families. Please have empathy. It is sorely lacking in this world but God cares, God listens, God works.

It is actually the most that we can do , not the least.