Thursday, April 08, 2010

The Poverty of Too Much

I am rather irreverent to the books I read. I dog-ear. I underline. I write comments in the margin. I draw arrows from one phrase to another on the page. Someday when I'm gone and somebody goes through the books I've read, they're going to think I was half nuts. (Wait, did I say half?).

You can generally tell which books impact me the most by looking at how much I have marked them up. Just this week I finished such a book, entitled, "Hope Lives - A Journey of Restoration," by Amber Van Schooneveld. Here are a couple of paragraphs from her book that received such markings...

"I am in the greatest poverty," she says, "a poverty of my soul, when I eat my fill and lounge on my couch, while thinking only fleetingly of others not as materially blessed as I have been. My poverty is real when my love is deadened, medicated, frozen by too much. And my soul is maybe in even more danger than those in the poverty of too little."

She continues on...
"I am no great emissary kindly bringing restoration to those people. No. I am simply a fellow human, given a different responsibility and role to play on this earth. God placed me where I am, and he placed others where they are. The goal isn't for others to become like me, a wealthy American. The goal is simply for everyone to have enough. Those in poverty need enough--enough food each day, enough clean water to lead a healthy life, enough dignity to be the masterpiece God created them to be. And for me, straying closer to the poverty of too much, I need to move further back toward enough, to use what I have been given to help lift others toward enough, to use my resources to love as Jesus loved."

2 comments:

Cory & Kris Thede said...

words to chew on. Thanks for sharing.

Anonymous said...

Ah...you're killin' me; slaying my conscience; pushing me to answer the call that has been gnawing at me.
I'm looking for 'where to begin' my own dive into God's call to action.

Thank you God, for the call and for others who honestly write about their struggles. May we be vessels of use to our loving God.