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I Hate Poverty

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I have days where I feel overwhelmed at the amount of poverty I see in one day.  I hate poverty.
I spent the last 10 minutes with a young boy, my sons' age, whose eyes have been gauged out so that he is more successful at begging.
Today, I really HATE poverty. It makes me want to puke...and sometimes I do.

I was talking with my good friend Bimla yesterday.  She works harder than I do every day - just to survive and to provide for her family.  She's never made more than $2 a day. She's smarter than I am.  She's harder working than I am.  She doesn't even have enough money to put a bathroom in her house or afford running water.  How is this?  I hate poverty.

Sometimes, I think poverty is the culmination of all things bad and wrong in this world.  Its hard to believe that I can feel so disgusted, frustrated, mad, and sad about poverty, and yet, I've never truly experienced even a day of it myself. I've never been poor.  Have you?  Sure, I've had to work my entire life.  I had to work for my first car, my education, my "stuff".  I've mowed lawns, picked weeds, cleaned bathrooms, waited tables...but just the fact that I had the opportunity to work for those things and earn those things is a luxury in comparison to the people I work with each day.
I hate poverty.

Facing the reality of poverty seems to stretch me so thin that I feel like I'm going to break in half.  My gut hurts.  My heart hurts.  I cry till my eyes are dry.  And did I mention that I have never spent 1 day being poor?  Imagine how the poor feel about it.  I'm so thankful that I believe in a God who can fix poverty - who heals, restores, makes things right....and He can do all these things without my help.  But I'm also thankful that He has asked me to help.  I'm better for it...much better for it.

-Mel Murray

2 comments

  • Linda Belden: October 20, 2011

    Mel, I taught with your mom at Kansas City Christian for awhile. I now work at a Title I school, where lots of our kids are on free and reduced lunch. Many of our kids are from families who do not speak English. Their lives are so hard; they don’t have a car. We know they eat two meals a day because they eat breakfast and lunch at school. I worry about them in the summer—whether they are eating, supervised, cool enough. I was never poor, either. Not rich, but not poor. It seems so unfair. And yet, some of my children are so happy in spite of it. They give me hugs and unconditional love, and they appreciate what I do. I realize our poor kids are way richer than those in India, but my heart breaks for the poor anywhere. But Jesus said that poor and undefiled religion was caring for widows and orphans—the poor. So, you are never more like Jesus than when you serve them. I love reading about your ministry in India; thank you for serving Him there.

  • Peggy Ward: October 27, 2011

    Melody, I join you in hating poverty. I don’t even know what you are seeing in India, but I see a bit of it here…a man raised in Connecticut, not even 30 years old…all black teeth. Every day, so many at the traffic lights, begging for anything. Little children in very nice neighborhoods, with no love or supervision..poverty is not just economic, it’s transcendant in spirit, emotion and culture. We pray for you daily, and are so blessed to join you in that – a calling that only Jesus could grace you for. We ask Him to give you sufficient grace each day just to do what He wants you to do just this day. And all your street kids. And all your artisans. And all those recovering. Jesus is enough. God bless you.

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