There are few things as hard in life as staring into the eyes of a hungry person.
Most of us – even, if not especially, followers of Christ – reflexively look away. Why do we do that? For me, it is a combination of things. The expectation of being asked for money….the awkwardness of engaging someone who doesn’t look or smell or behave like the people I hang out with….the feeling that I’m being snookered or that my money will be used for purposes other than food.
But I wonder if there are even deeper things going on within me?….things that I may so greatly fear that I can barely access them?….things that will “expose” me to, not only the world, but to myself and to my Lord?! Perhaps it’s my greed or my pride. Maybe it’s the voice inside my soul that says, “Had you been born to different parents or in a different country, that could have been you, and may yet one day be!”
The fact is that we are called to be our brother’s keeper and, deep down inside, we don’t want to be. No wonder when a child dies every 5 seconds because of hunger! Who can accept that kind of responsibility?
The good news we will present at JMI’s FEAST or FAMINE dinner on November 16th is that God doesn’t lay that unbearable weight upon us. We aren’t specifically called to “feed the nations” or end poverty. Like the Great Commission, our calling is predicated on the assumption that (1) you will be intentional about going into your Jerusalems, Judeas, Samarias and throughout the world and (2) you will encounter individuals “as you are going.” And to those who ask of you, you are asked to give. As my good friend, Jason Cruise puts it, “We aren’t asked to scale mountains; we’re asked to look up at the person on the ledge 20 feet above us.”
I hope you will mark FEAST or FAMINE on your calendar, not as an event you “should” go to, but an event you “need.” This will be one of those rare experiential opportunities that direct our focus to people and places whose daily bread comes with no guarantees, if it comes at all.
In our eating, our directed conversations and the video that will be presented, you will have the opportunity to express your solidarity with the less fortunate. You will also be introduced to ways you can make a difference in the lives of those God puts in your path!
Please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org or sign up at the JMI Booth to reserve your place at the FEAST or FAMINE table. The cost for adults and students is $5 and $1 for children who will enjoy their own special mission experience.