We have less than 4 months left.
4 months before embarking on our greatest adventure yet.
An adventure that requires giving up our self-focused, “fulfilling” lives, and allowing love to take over. As we have begun to plan, thinking about fundraising, packing up, preparing for Africa, it starts to feel overwhelming. As I look around at the world, I’m saddened the deep need. It is as if the world is crying out for help- our help, and I’m staring at a screen, with a warm cup of tea, trying to write a list of who to send our sponsor letters to.
But Syria is still crying out. Somalia, Jordan, South Sudan, Uganda, Ethiopia, Congo, North Korea, India.
War. Famine. Pain. Disease. Death. Displacement. Orphans, refugees and broken families.
There are currently 19.5 million refugees around the world.
Millions of people are hungry, homeless and hopeless. We’re desperate to help. People are desperate for food, a safe home, stabilization and hope. Our hearts are yearning to care.
But we don’t even know where to start.
We feel called to begin in Tanzania. Bringing people hope through education. So, we’ve begun to lesson plan and study Swahili, trying to focus on the journey that lies ahead. 6 months of providing English to the Tanzanians. And then the Congo. My heart leaps at the idea of working alongside the children. The potential to teach, encourage, develop relationships, provide sponsorship and love.
But why are we going? Why Now? Why Africa?
The short answer is obedience. As Christ has asked of us, “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations.” The Rufiji people don’t know the Gospel and there are only a handful of Christians amidst several thousand of the Rufiji people. They are an unreached people group and we see it as our response to this call that God has placed upon his followers. The bible tells us that, “pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their affliction.” James 1:27
We want to care. We want to be genuine in our love. We want to spread the hope of the gospel.
There’s another reason too. The bible says, “At the present time, your surplus will meet their need, so that in turn their surplus will meet your need. Then there will be equality” (v. 14). We believe that as we go, and give what we have, we too will receive much from the people. Not necessarily material give and take, but a much more imminent meaning, that many of us in the Western world miss.
Its not a one way street.
We are not the hero’s. We are not going to “fix” all their problems. We are going to serve others and work in relationship with the people.
Jesus says that material possessions can be a huge distraction (cf. Matt. 19:23). Our culture is predominantly materialistic. How else do we explain the fact that we have more knowledge of and access to humanitarian crisis all over the world, but we remain basically untouched by it. Is it not because our society teaches that our careers, our families, our possessions, our hard-earned paychecks are ours for the keeping? Sure, if we feel a little generous we will give out of our surplus, as long as it doesn’t impinge on our standard of living.
That’s how we understand 2 Cor. 8:14. The physical need for financial aid and education begs us to give up the possessions that our Western culture tells us to cling on to with all our might: time and money. In doing so, we become free to discover more of the real purpose for our existence on this planet;
To live selflessly. To show a broken world God’s love through actions. Every single act of kindness begins to remove hopelessness, remove pain, and brings love, belonging and joy.
And of course, not everyone is called to go overseas. There are hurting and desperate souls all around us. In our community, our workplaces, and our families. Simply be a light to those around you.
In order to help those across the globe and shine a light of hope in places of deep need we require your support on this journey.
Please consider partnering with us.
"Sometimes working in a third world country makes me feel like I am emptying the ocean with an eye-dropper. And just when I have about half a cup full of water, it rains…. God tells me to keep going. that He loves me. that he loves these people. that He will never leave or forsake any of us, not one. My work IS important, to Him.” -Katie Davis.