Last night in our small groups at our Young Adults service (called Ingage) I shared some of my journey with our people. Once person stated something that has stuck with me. She said: "Only in America do we have drugs that help us eat less".
She's right, we are a country that produces drugs that helps people eat less! While many countries cant even get enough food to eat, we spend extra money on drugs (diet pills etc.) that help us to eat less. We are a country over not just indulgence, but uber overindulgence. It's not just food either, it's in almost every category! A man named Nick also stated that we are a country that has most resources and so we grow up thinking everyone has as much as we have. Whether we see pictures or not it's hard for our American minds to adjust that people have different experiences than we do when it comes to food.
All of this is true and I am finding that by me experiencing very little of what the majority of the hungry world experiences I am learning a new respect for their situation.
Seriously today I weighed in at 196.5, which means I have lost 17 pounds in just 12 days. When I say this is unsustainable, it truly is. If I were to lose all of my fat stores and living only on the food I intake I think my level of energy would be supremely dwindled from where it is today.
I know my body would adjust, as the people in Burkina and other places have adjusted but still, I wouldn't have the energy I have now, I believe...it's still not sustainable for normal living.
How can we adjust our thinking, our lifestyle, our spending towards those who live in destitute situations? Some say: "If you got it, spend it" a motto I've heard even recently, pointing to the fact that they "earned" their money so they have the right to spend it anyway they want to. Granted as a person in America that is 100% true, but as believers (those of us reading this that are), can we really think of our income this way? Not saying that God will or does impose himself on our spending, but should't we seek him more with our money, and in turn the way we eat with that money?
I know for a fact that in just 13 days I've saved over $50 on food. That's a good chunk of change...I don't even want to think about how much it will be by day 31 I've saved from eating differently. I know that God is asking for more of a say with how Hilary and I spend our money because of this sojourn as well as how we eat.
I've been very tempted with food lately, I'm not going to lie. My stomach has reached the point where it is craving all my favorite foods. I can smell a good pizza two rooms away. My mouth begins to water at the site of these (pic on right), what MJ calls: "Chocolate Balls" and a big old juicy Cheeseburger would feel oh so good sliding down my throat about now. My desire for coffee has turned into a desire for a pick me up rather than the flavor now (finally) but the desire is still there, begging to get a fix. Yet, I still feel strong and energetic, not at all lethargic like I expected to feel by this point.
I appreciate your prayers, your thoughts, your encouragement but most of all I appreciate the fact that God is speaking to many of you during this sojourn. My hope was that in sharing my experience you too would learn and have a heart for Africa, in particular the people of Burkina.
Please consider helping my friend Chris Coakley in his mission to feed the people in Burkina Faso with his organization: Grain of Hope 58:10
Tomorrow, I will highlight another ministry I just found out about called Hope 4 Africa as well as give more information about Grain of Hope 58:10! Don't miss it!