Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Audible...


I won't be able to do the post on Kelly today because he didn't show up to paint today for reasons that I will explain tomorrow. So, hence, in honor of Saturday's Seahawks game, I'll call an audible and share a story...

Tonight, while we were eating dinner, Stephanie said, "I have an idea. How about we give the rest of the chicken to our neighbors. I have been seeing the little girl (the one pictured) and she looks so hungry." I think I have mentioned before that their is a family who lives in a deserted area next to us. The grandfather is an alcoholic and is super skinny. The grandmother is struggling with a severe stroke. The girl and boy looks so skinny. Anyway, so we stopped before we were full and asked the guard to make some Nshima. The guard didn't finish the Nshima in time for us all to go there and so just the guard and I went after dark. They were very grateful. The one room house was barely lit, and I couldn't even make out anyone in the dark. The guard and the family talked in Nyanga for about 4 minutes and then asked if I had anything to say. I just said we were praying for them and that we would bring food when we could. The one regret I had when we finished was that I couldn't understand them at all. I really could be of no help other than just provide food. The reason I wanted to share this story is the realization that it is not just in Africa where people are hungry. We all have neighbors somewhere and someplace that need food. And the best part of it is you can speak their language. The words of Job have been haunting me these last few days.

Job 31:16-22 (NIV)
"If I have denied the desires of the poor
or let the eyes of the widow grow weary,
[17] if I have kept my bread to myself,
not sharing it with the fatherless--
[18] but from my youth I reared him as would a father,
and from my birth I guided the widow--
[19] if I have seen anyone perishing for lack of clothing,
or a needy man without a garment,
[20] and his heart did not bless me
for warming him with the fleece from my sheep,
[21] if I have raised my hand against the fatherless,
knowing that I had influence in court,
[22] then let my arm fall from the shoulder,
let it be broken off at the joint.

1 John 3:17-18 (NIV)
If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him? [18] Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth.

I had an older man Mbale, the guy that "fixed" our toilets come to our gate and he wanted a job or a Christmas bonus or just some food. I didn't give him anything. I have regretted that quite a bit the past few days. I know I can't change the world, but I can help those who God has put in my life.

Anyway, I guess I just thought I would share scripture to challenge us all, a challenge to pray and ask God how he wants you to alleviate the suffering of a single mom, a widow, an orphan, a senior couple, or a middle class couple just needing a good meal. How can you help the soup kitchens, or the homeless or the disabled feel your love through food and/or clothing? I was encouraged by my wife tonight. May we all spur each other on to live like Job and love like John.

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