After reading the book Radical (of which I have a love/hate relationship with), I wrote a review for Amazon.com. Although I struggled with the author’s communication style, it is a book worth reading. I love his ideas and thought processes, but I don’t care for his style of throwing it in your face and trying to inflict a guilt trip if you don’t do what he says. He backs up much of his book with biblical teachings, and like anyone that reads the Bible or anything else, he has his own interpretations of it. As soon as it’s approved, I will post the review here on my blog, or you can look on Amazon, if you would like to read it.
His book did give me several good ideas to process and thoughts to ponder. One of the ideas I had, based on his challenges to the readers at the end of his book, I implemented last night. The first of his five challenges was to pray for the entire world in a year’s time. I thought about this and it’s not something I’m doing, although I do pray for impoverished people a lot. This is such an easy, yet powerful thing to do, I decided right away that I should start this. I also thought my kids need to be involved in doing it as well.
I thought back to the first time I had ever seen or heard about poor people. It was back in the early 70’s (yes, I know, I’m dating myself and I’m old) when a commercial came on for helping starving kids, hosted by Sally Struthers, sponsoring African kids through ChildFund international. My parents never told me about this world where kids don’t have enough to eat, although I did hear a lot about the world where kids that don’t behave go to live at orphanages. I not only had my basic needs of food and shelter met, but I had everything I wanted. We weren’t rich, but we were a middle class family that learned to spend every dime that we had for ourselves to make our lives easier, more comfortable and entertaining. I could not comprehend the world I was seeing on TV, and if we just sent some money every month, we could help eliminate this awfulness. I honestly can’t remember if I ever asked my parents if we could help, but we never did. I was one of those kids who challenged everything I heard, not falling into the advertising trap very easily. Could this be for real or are they just trying to get money by using these horrific images? I did not know, and being a young kid, I had no money so I didn’t think much about it. In the back of my mind I figured they must have really been bad to end up in a place like that. What an incredibly sad childhood memory.
Wow, that was a long rabbit trail! Back to the idea. I shopped. Yes, I went to Half Price books and spent $10 on a used world atlas. My geography skills, for lack of a better word, suck. I could sugar coat that, but what would be the point? I’m visual and for me to see where all of these places are and learn more about them is important so we are able to do God’s work in whatever way he wants us to. Not only will we be praying for the world, we will know where these places are and understand some of their struggles and needs.
Every night when we choose a place to pray for people in need, we are writing our name and date next to the location in the atlas. In addition, we are trying to do some research on these places so we know their needs. Again, the shopping for the atlas was still shopping. It did fall under my ‘only buy used stuff’ rule and I thought it was for a good cause. What do you think?