Nate and his family are just over halfway through a 40-day “A Place at the Table” journey of eating what their sponsored child in Haiti eats. They’ve been eating rice, beans, chicken, avocados, bananas and oranges.Continue Reading ›
The Hopkins family decided to plan a monthly sacrifice challenge throughout 2012. For the month of January they sacrificed in the area of food.Continue Reading ›
Nine-year-old Jessa lives in a tiny hovel situated within a crowded squatter community in metro Manila. She wakes up at 4 a.m. and it is still dark at this time of day. But inside Jessa’s home, it is always dark.
Today is World Food Day. A day to realize how blessed we are just for having a chance to eat a meal and get a full tummy.
Fasting isn’t an instrument to get God to hear our prayers or to help us master a primordial impulse or to accomplish anything. It’s something you do when circumstances are bad enough that you don’t want to eat and it would seem wrong to do so.
Three great tragedies – death, separation, poverty – all in one week. I was down for the count, lost and overwhelmed. The world was too filled with grief, and my contribution wasn’t going to make a dent in it.
It seems we, as humans, are always passing the buck, or bucking the responsibility.
Jesus replied, “They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat.”
“We have here only five loaves of bread and two fish,” they answered. — Matthew 14:16-17, NIV
Jesus saw the multitude and that the multitude was hungry. His attitude was not to leave their well-being up to someone else. He took responsibility and He wanted His disciples to assume this responsibility as well.
His disciples, however, could not see past their own limitations.
“We don’t have enough food for all these people” and “we don’t have the money to buy food for all these people” were the excuses Jesus heard.
The disciples wanted to send the hungry people away to fend for themselves, passing the responsibility of feeding the hungry back onto the hungry themselves.
Jesus, however, was not deterred by the physical limitations of the situation. He had bread the disciples didn’t understand. He understood the limitless nature of God’s provision, a provision not encased in the physical reality around us, but in the supernatural reality of God.
Is our response not much the same as the disciples when we are confronted with the need of the hungry?
I like to listen. My wife will tell you I’m not very good at it. But I really do like to listen to the way people say things … and the meaning behind certain words or phrases. I recently tried an experiment. I paid close attention to some of the things we say around the house, and then tried to imagine how different those conversations would be if we were living in a developing country. Think of how these phrases would be different — or non-existent — if we were living in one of the poorest countries of the world:
- “You wanna go out to eat tonight?”
- “What would you like for lunch today?”
- “There’s nothing on TV.”
- “It’s so nice out…let’s go for a drive with the top down on the Jeep.”
- “It’s starting to get warm again. We need to think about turning the sprinkler system back on in the yard.”
- “I need to run to the store to get some more diapers and Diet Coke. Can you think of anything else we need?”
- “Morgan is outgrowing his clothes so fast, is it okay with you if I go to the store to see if I can find him some new pajamas?”
- “I’ll empty out the dishwasher.”
- I’m going to take a shower.”
- “Feel like ordering a movie?”
- “The housing market is so bad right now. I don’t know if it’s the right time to sell our home. But we sure need more space.”
- “I’m starving!”
- “What would you like for dessert?”
I would bet that most of those phrases are NEVER uttered in the homes of children who attend Compassion child development centers. And the ones that are, are said in a much different context.
Wouldn’t it be interesting to listen in on their conversations for a week?