What does it mean to take notice of someone? On some level, it means to acknowledge his or her presence in the moment. This begs the question as to nature of the acknowledgement. If I behave in such a way as to convey inconvenience or discomfort, then I have not seen the other person. Everyone sees super star athletes, public officials, movie moguls, and other such regaled persons. The media splatters their faces all over the media outlets. Madison Avenue publications such as Cosmopolitan, People, Maxim, and GQ become de facto dispensers of who the public sees and how to see them on a regular basis. It’s a veritable media tsunami, which rushes over the minds and hearts of the readers of those Madison Avenue magazines.
This past Sunday night, I spent my evening participating in an event about a woman and an organization who see people outside of the parameters set forth by Madison Avenue. Her name is Juli Boit, and she founded Living Room Ministries. Mrs. Boit is a nurse by training via Azusa Pacific University (APU). During her time at APU and in the midst of Southern California life, she sensed an intensifying call and burden to see people, the hurting, the downcast, and the terminally ill, with the heart and eyes of the Lord. This sort of thing does not happen overnight. The transformation occurs from the moment of conversion in Christ by the person and work of the Holy Spirit.
The Space Between is a newly released, independently, produced documentary, which covers Mrs. Boit’s life and work through Living Room Ministries. Throughout the entire eighty minutes, we immerse ourselves into Mrs. Boit’s life and lifestyle as an American missionary in a foreign land. Living Room Ministries makes its home in Kipkaren, Kenya, and Mrs. Boit has made her home there, too. Her husband is a local, and the two have a daughter. The expansion of her personal life parallels the expansion of Living Room Ministries via the hospice in Kipkaren. Normally, hospices are weigh stations for people before they die. The powerful work of the Lord through Mrs. Boit and Living Room has turned the hospice into a place of hope instead of being a final stop on the road to death.
Mrs. Boit and her staff see people of all ages and walks of life. Those deemed as lost causes find the hope and the reality of life. It is true that some in the hospice still die. It is the sort of thing that remains a constant tension in the life. The level of treatment toward each patient at the Living Room hospice is consistent without partiality. When the need arises, phone calls are made in order to move mountains. Sometimes the patient leaves the hospice embracing life while other times life ends abruptly and cruelly. How does one put the two together? How does Mrs. Boit and her staff do it? Her answer was a very simple one devoid of complication and pretense. Love them as a human being deserves to be loved. I take that to mean the following: see them, listen to them, hold them, feed them, cry with them…and on and on it goes.
Those are all basic activities, which don’t require medical training, advanced degrees, or believing and expressing the right doctrine. Four and five year old kids accomplish these activities without batting an eye. Who are the people in your lives that deserve to be seen by you? Are you willing to see them? If you’re interested in learning more about Mrs. Boit and her organization, Living Room Ministries, then here’s the website: http://www.livingroominternational.org/. The feature length documentary called The Space Between has the following website: http://thespacebetweendoc.com/, which chronicles Mrs. Boit and her work at the Living Room hospice in Kipkaren, Kenya. Last but not least, I do not know Mrs. Boit’s mission statement or even the organizations…the following passage exemplifies her life and work: “Open your mouth for the mute, for the rights of all who are destitute. Open your mouth, judge righteously, defend the rights of the poor and needy” (Proverbs 31:8-9, ESV).