Poverty & Injustice: Creating a Compassionate Heart

 

- If you haven't read my previous blog post on how God led me to Thailand, you should definitely check it out! 

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"Therefore as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, having been firmly rooted and now being built up in Him and established in your faith, just as you were instructed, and overflowing with gratitude." - Colossians 2:6-7 

 

Friends! 

I am super excited to be leaving for Thailand in three months, for three months!! The Holy Spirit has been leading me every day in preparation for this trip. God has placed me in multiple situations that have stretched me and have readied my heart for that which I will see in Southeast Asia. I am very excited for this opportunity, but at the same time, my heart aches for those trapped in human trafficking & sexual exploitation. I know that my eyes will continue to open as I become more aware of the injustice in this world. 

A few weeks ago I was in Vancouver, where some friends and I were travelling. We stumbled across the Downtown Eastside of Vancouver. After doing some quick research, I learned that the downtown Eastside is one of the top rated locations in Canada for poverty. My eyes were quickly opened to the brokenness we have right outside our doorsteps. What are you doing right now to help alleviate the suffering of the oppressed? 

In preparation for Thailand, I have been assigned a book called "When Helping Hurts: How to alleviate poverty without hurting the poor...and yourself". This book has completely shifted my thought process on what poverty is, and how to be involved. 

In a nutshell, we have all experienced some degree of poverty. Lets face it. Every day you come across someone who is broken. Poverty does not have to include a lack of materialistic items (although this is commonly how we as North Americans view it), rather it is much deeper than that. Divorce, adultery, depression, shame, fear, dissatisfaction, voicelessness, inferiority, etc.  (Corbett & Fikkert pg. 51). Each of these things are defined as poverty. 

We often view the cause of poverty as a lack of knowledge, oppression by powerful people, personal sins of the poor, or a lack of material resources. From a believers perspective, we can view it as a result of: 

  1. A broken relationship with God 
  2. A broken relationship with self 
  3. A broken relationship with others 
  4. A broken relationship with the rest of creation. 

The secondary cause is then broken systems: political, economical, social, and religious. 

"Poverty is the result of relationships that do not work, that are not just, that are not for life, that are not harmonious or enjoyable. Poverty is the absence of shalom in all its meanings." - Bryant L. Myers. 

Jesus is the only one who can reconcile these broken relationships. Jesus is the only healer. The only hope we have. I praise God for sending himself to die for my sins. I mess up every single day. And still, He has grace for me, He loves me.  Thank you Jesus. 

I got to sit through an informative talk regarding the sexual exploitation and human trafficking that happens here in the city of Calgary. Bus loads of women are brought in specifically during large events like the Calgary Stampede. Feel free to check out Not in my City, and Chill - two organizations who have taken action upon this issue in Calgary. 

The past few months have been a season of growth. My eyes have continued to be unveiled to the hurts surrounding me, and across the globe. The exciting thing is that God knows each and every person on this earth. He knit you together in your mothers womb (Psalm 139: 14). He calls you by your name. He loves you. 

I cannot wait to go serve those in Southeast Asia, with a love that can reconcile the brokenness they experience/experienced. 

God is so good. So faithful. Thank you to each of you who have been following me in this season. I am super excited to share with you how God uses me in Thailand. 

If you would like to support me financially, please see my previous blog post. I will also be holding a fundraiser eventOctober 26. If you would like to support me financially by "Shopping for a Cause" Necklaces are currently available for pre-order, and T-shirts are coming soon. Message me for more information!

Regarding prayer, please continue to pray for my heart that God would continue to reveal himself to me in evident ways. 

I am SO pumped! 

Thanks friends 

- Re 

"Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him." - Colossians 3:16-17. 

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