Thursday, September 1, 2011

From a Chair to a Mattress, From Paradise to Human

I was going to do what I would do any normal night, which was to have dinner, maybe chat a little on Facebook, and then do some more studying. I hardly watch TV so I decided to catch a little bit of a show. 

On Oprah's Network OWN they were airing an old Primetime episode. The camera crew had followed and compared lives from the kids in the wealthiest suburb in America to the kids in the poorest city in America about 20 minutes away. Even though I really needed to study I am so grateful I watched this episode. Talk about a slap in the face.

These kids are some of the happiest, ambitious kids yet they live in the most horrible conditions. Going to school for them is so exciting everyday. This one little boys spirit was like nothing else I had ever seen, such humility and joy. He was proud when his family had upgraded from sleeping on a chair to finally getting an abandoned room in a friends house with one mattress for all of them. 

This little boy no matter what he had thanked God for it. He never was mad at Him for not giving him better and was never complaining. Even though he went hungry most nights, slept in a room with no heating, and had to put his pillow over his head so he wouldn't hear the gun shots that were so loud at night, he was so grateful.

The other night my family and I had gone out to a fine dinning restaurant in Down Town Dallas for my sister's birthday. We were sitting in our chairs, beautiful linen clothes on the table, people waiting on us hand and foot, someone rushing to fill our waters after we had only taken a few sips. I couldn't think about myself in such a selfish position I was in so I began to people watch. There was big group of women at the table next to us and they were talking about how they were going to have bottles of Crystal at the club that night and dance the night away and I couldn't help but become angry inside and I thought:

"How is this fair? How is it that I am here, having an amazing meal at one of the nicest restaurants in Dallas, sitting amongst the elite of the city, being waited on hand, and foot yet 20 minutes away there are people who didn't have enough to eat tonight, probably don't have a working air conditioner, and are more than likely going to hear gun shots or sirens the entire night."

I couldn't help but feel like I didn't belong. I was suddenly very uncomfortable by the whole thing; the restaurant, the environment, the valet, the row of foreign cars parked in the front, yet a part of me felt like a hypocrite. How did I have the right to think down on these people when I am so blessed myself? 

Living in Nigeria for a few months I lived amongst poverty at its worst. I'll never forget my best friend there who didn't have shoes and her and I would play outside everyday. I had shoes, she did not. Why? Our nanny and driver hadn't seen their children in three years so they could work and pay for their children's medical expenses who had Malaria, yet my parents had two healthy girls and got to enjoy them everyday. Why?

But then I also think about how God sent His son, who was living in Paradise with Him, to become a human, to be broke, to be homeless, and to die for me. Why? Well the only reason I know is because He loves me. Out of all the questions I have, I can only answer this one. Therefore there is a principle; God does everything for a reason. I am not God so my job is not to figure out why.

But I'll tell you what my job is, it is to become like Jesus and to serve as He did. To be humble like Him and continue to seek out opportunities to help someone in any little or big way that I can. I know I will never have to drink out of the cup He had to, so it should be an honor and a privilege to serve others.

This not only showed me how much more I can do in my ministry but has really pushed me to continue to move forth with the Invisible Children Chapter at my University.

Please pray that God will continue to humble me out and give me the courage to go out of my comfort zone to serve others like Jesus did and still does in Heaven today.

I know this post was a little heavy but I feel like If I'm only talking about how many beautiful things God has surrounded me with, material things, or beauty tips and don't give you the other side of me and of life, I have failed in showing you all of me and therefore have lied to you. Life is not only about flowers, perfumes, and cotton candy (even though those things bring me happiness and I know God wants me to enjoy them) there is a reality out there and it must be made more aware. So while I am trying to make others more aware I am trying to make myself aware and action oriented. Without any action, my "awareness" means nothing.

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