Tag Archives: powerless

those who only watch

To be courageous in the face of evil are those who put their trust in God.

Deploring the evil that we see happening in the world isn’t enough. We are not spectators. Silence in the face of evil places us on the side of the perpetrators.

All of us have a voice. All of us have the ability to speak out for those who are oppressed, those who are disenfranchised, those among us ignored and powerless.

Those who only watch are partners with those doing the evil. Our silence in the face of injustice is tacit agreement.

All of us have a voice. We just need  the courage to use it.

a prayer for courage

Gracious and most compassionate Creator, we come to you this morning looking back at the year we are completing even as we are straining forward toward the year to come. We recognize that we have been richly blessed this year. We have been given so much. Your grace and goodness toward us is far greater than we can comprehend.

We offer our humble thanksgiving for all the gifts we have received this past year. And at the same time, we ask your forgiveness for our stubborn and willful disobedience to your perfect will for our lives. Forgive us for every missed opportunity to share your love and grace with those most in need.

As we look forward to 2015 we would pray that we might be fully open to your Holy Spirit. Lead us, guide us toward new avenues of service. Empower each us us through your Spirit to reach out to the poor, the hungry, and the powerless in your name. Help us to be givers of your grace and mercy in every situation, and especially help us to be peacemakers in times of confusion and conflict. Let us never cease striving for justice.

Let your love and compassion for those most in need be reflected in our every action, and not just in our words. And in all things help us remember that we can truly do all things through your power. Help us be unafraid to face this new year with a spirit of love and power as we continue to praise you through our every thought, word and deed.

 

ending hunger isn’t about numbers

The acute deadly hunger experienced during famines haunts us. The emotional images of dead and dying children, wasted bodies, empty and haunted eyes and seemingly endless lines of hungry waiting for a meager ration of life-sustaining food scream out for action. No one who has seen images of such suffering can easily forget them.

But such graphic and horrifying images often mask an even greater tragedy. That’s right. Hunger has another face. That other face is the daily hunger and under-nutrition suffered by 850 million of our human family. This is chronic hunger, the hunger that never goes away. This is the hunger that never ceases stalking the poor.

This is the hunger that never makes the evening news. It’s the invisible hunger. And it’s the hunger that kills far more than famines.

Chronic hunger is a killer.  And like any killer, chronic hunger leaves in its wake anguish for the innocent victims. Chronic hunger leaves in its wake grieving parents.  Chronic hunger leaves and emptiness that can never be filled.

Also, like any killer, chronic hunger also instills fear. Those stalked by chronic hunger live with a fear that never goes away.

The poor, the powerless, the hungry live in a world of abundant resources, yet they are refused access. The hungry of our family are forced to live in a world of anguish, grief and constant fear.

Ending hunger is not about numbers. It’s about basic morality. It’s about living faithfully as part of a global family.

We know we can eradicate chronic hunger. The real question is if we are faithful enough to do it. I guess in the end it all comes down to priorities, doesn’t it?

 

ending hunger is a lifestyle issue

 

I have often stated my firm belief that we can end hunger in our lifetime. And just as often I have provided reason and rationale for that belief. This morning I will do so yet again.

All it would take to eradicate the scourge of hunger forever is for people of faith to live out the teachings of those they profess to follow. Ending hunger is simply a matter of people of faith adopting lifestyles of faithfulness.

All the world’s great religions teach the same core values of love, compassion, and justice. The Golden Rule is a major tenet of all the world’s great faiths. And if those of us who profess even a modicum of spirituality would live according to the tenet of the Golden Rule we would soon have a world where hunger was nothing but an ugly memory. Hunger is a lifestyle issue.

In my book, Getting Off Our Buts: Making Mission Happen, I put it this way:

People are hungry because they are poor. The poor are powerless. They are powerless because we have no sense of community. Regardless of what we say, we do not feel or act as if we belong to one human family.

If we acted as if we belonged to one family we would not allow one child–much less 25,000 of our family–to suffer and die unnecessarily from hunger every single day.

We can end hunger in our lifetime. We just need to match the way we live with what we say we believe. Once we begin loving each other as we love ourselves we will end hunger forever simply by being the people we want to be.