Today was corn distribution in the new work area for the mission (through Celeo and his plans) in Talanga. This is a bigger town than other areas where we work....for some reason that would give me pause to think that would mean better economic/physical circumstances. While the poverty is still there, what continually strikes me there is the spiritual poverty....the hopelessness, lack of joy, and hunger that is there that before now has found no well from which to drink.
We got back tonight and during debrief I heard two very mature, very spirit led comments by Ashley and Jordan....one saying they see life there as more simple, with less distractions and a more complete trust in God, ready to abandon everything and move there and live like that....and the other honest enough to come out to say that it was uncomfortable, that selfishness begets selfishness and the desire not to have to deal with that. Whatever the feelings seeing that might give us temporarily....I continue to struggle with what we continue to do change that which we are seeing. What it does to us emotionally is one thing....how we use that to change ourselves and help change the world for God is another.
We also has a spirited discussion of where is the origin of our faith. What I have grown to have learned over the past nine years was not generally shared by the rest of the group, but the discussion was in love, and I would hope that for both sides of the fence (free will decision based in ourselves versus a renewing and being made alive in Christ to recognize the faith given us from Him....not of ourselves) we would be challeneged and study God's word more to delve deeper and come to a greater understanding. These are not youth just wanting to hang out in a foreign country for two weeks...this is real, and important....this is life, and how we live it makes a difference.