If you are a regular at this site, then you probably already know that one thing that is important to me is the fight against extreme poverty. There is a very large part of our world that goes to bed hungry every night, and because of their economic situations they lack the resources to maintain a ‘normal’ and healthy life.
My heart breaks for these people when I read verses like Micah 6:6-8 (ESV, emphasis mine):
6 “With what shall I come before the LORD,
and bow myself before God on high?
Shall I come before him with burnt offerings,
with calves a year old?
7 Will the LORD be pleased with thousands of rams,
with ten thousands of rivers of oil?
Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression,
the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?”
8 He has told you, O man, what is good;
and what does the LORD require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness,
and to walk humbly with your God?
Considering that this was an Old Testament prophet that shared this, I am really moved by God revealing His heart to his people in this way. During a time when ‘salvation’ was based on the Law, God was saying that He didn’t care about those offerings. What He did care about was that we were doing the right thing for His children!
Founder and CEO of Acumen Fund (a global non-profit that uses entrepreneurial approaches to solve the problems of global poverty) Jacqueline Novogratz shared some interesting views on the escape from poverty in this TED Talks video…
[youtube oD06XPtmLZY Video :: Jacqueline Novogratz on an escape from poverty]
I love the point that she makes about dignity. I’m not sure what Novogratz’s religious views are, but I do know that this point rings true with my faith. I firmly believe that at the core of the Christian message, there is a message of hope.
In poverty there is no hope.
Helping people out of poverty is an act of giving hope.
And hope helps people to hold their heads high.
It helps to give them dignity.
It helps them to recognize their value.
People that live in extreme poverty often have little reason to hold their heads high. And as children of the Creator, they do have value and significance. That is why it is our job as Christians to help give them the hope and dignity that they need.
Related article: poverty mission to africa ’09