Let me tell you about two people that I totally admire right now.
The first is actually a family, the Davis’ family: Brad and Nicole and their two children (Ariana and Ciara). In the next couple of weeks they are moving down to a ghetto in the Dominican Republic. They are going to surround themselves with poverty… not in the “missionary” sort of way, but in the “this is life” sort of way. A while ago he and Nicole were convicted by the realities of poverty and the lack of true social justice in the world. And unlike myself they took the conviction to heart and started asking what they could do about it. Then, after asking the question they started acting on the answers. And one of the answers was for him to quit his job and move his family down to the poor part of the DR so that their children (who are pretty darn young) can experience poverty first hand, and so that they can do something, no matter how small, to be Jesus to the people there.
I respect that… a lot.
The second person is my wife, Sara. People like to (lovingly) make fun of her for her tendency to get fired up about political and social issues. It’s amazing. Over the last several months she read A LOT of books about food and the environment, slavery and global injustice. After months of reading she looked at her life and asked what could she realistically and sustainably do in light of what she’s read. She made two decisions. 1. She wasn’t going to eat slaughter house meat anymore (which means no meat) for environmental and ethical reasons, and she wasn’t going to eat chocolate that wasn’t fair trade anymore (and at $3 a bar means that she doesn’t eat a lot of chocolate) for human rights reasons. Those may seem like small sacrifices, but that’s not the point. They are sacrifices born out of a conviction to do what is right in the face of so much injustice. Plus, how small of a sacrifice is it really if no one is willing to do it. Would you give up chocolate for the sake of ending a thriving slave trade?
I also think that is gutsy.
And I respect that… a lot.
I am not that disciplined. I am not that convicted… at least not enough to give up petty comforts. My wife will refuse delicious chocolate brownies because the chocolate isn’t fair trade. I won’t. She won’t eat a fat juicy cheese burger because the animal was unnecessarily tortured on the way to our plates. I will. I know all of the reasons she stop doing those things… my response: “I haven’t read the book yet”.
I wish I was more like my wife. I wish I was more like the Davis’.
Perhaps I should do something about that… after my cup of chocolate covered bacon.
P.S. true story on the chocolate covered bacon… had it at the Minneapolis State Fair. Hometown hero!