WorldHelp October - Hungry

I really love food.  I kind of feel like that's seen as a heinous statement for a woman in America to make, since, you know, food (or at least the unhealthy kind that's usually my favorite) equals weight gain and all that jazz, but if I'm going to be honest, I really, REALLY love to eat!  I have hypothetical world-wide vacations planned based on where and what I want to eat, and my meal planning for the week is a half-day affair.  Of course, I also live in a country where the luxury of picking and choosing what goes into your belly is possible, and even encouraged.  One of the news 'headlines' on my homepage today was, "Would You Eat These Deliciously Exotic Foods?" (right alongside "Celebrity Inspired Halloween Looks" and "What Really Happened at Roswell?")  Don't get me wrong, I think God gave us our senses for a reason, including the sense of taste, and it's great to be able to use the resources in our grasp in order to enjoy the act of eating.  I'm also fairly certain that in heaven, broccoli will actually taste like chocolate chip ice cream and calories will no longer count.

However, we're not in heaven yet.  What if you lived in a place where food wasn't accessible at all?  What if you had a family to feed and care for, and no resources available to do so?  One of the headlines I didn't see featured on my homepage today was anything related to the humanitarian crisis in Syria.  So many other news stories have pushed Syria off the forefront of people's minds, while over 4 million displaced refugees inside the country, and 2 million more in neighboring countries, are struggling through the start of a harsh winter, while lacking something as basic as a blanket to keep warm.  These people have witnessed atrocities, seen family and friends killed before their eyes, and have been driven from their homes into refugee camps with rapidly deteriorating conditions.  They lack food, water, shelter, and medical care, and are waiting for someone to help.  Some even more staggering statistics:

  • More than 50 percent of Zaatari’s (one of the larger refugee camps) population is under the age of 18
  • More than 1 million gallons of water and 500,000 pieces of bread are distributed daily in Zaatari (that might sound like a lot, but distributed among 150,000+ people packed into 3 square miles, it doesn't go far.)
  • Women and children account for 75 percent of the entire refugee population

It's easy to let your eyes glaze over while reading facts such as these, to be overwhelmed by the sheer numbers, and to feel guilty for the blessings you might have in your life right now, but please, push through that and consider doing something to help!  I'm privileged to have the chance to blog for the organization WorldHelp, and they have designated October as World Hunger Action Month.  I'm glad to be able to use this blog as a platform to spread awareness about situations like those in Syria, and being able to share stories with you like those of Fadi, Sheika, Roa & Mohammed, and Amnah, Salwa, & Sabreen.  Knowing their personal stories is incredibly impacting and touching.  But awareness is only a starting point!  Being aware of worldwide situations such as these is good, but action is so much better!

I'm going to ask something of you.  I normally wouldn't do this, and I hate being pushy, but I'm going to ask that you set aside some time Wednesday, the 16th, to pray and consider giving financially to help alleviate some of this suffering for a child, or even a family.  October 16th is World Food Day, so be creative!  Maybe forgo eating lunch out and eat something from home instead, and give the dollars you saved towards WorldHelp's Blogger fundraising page.  The other members of the blogging community and myself would like to provide aid for 12 refugee children with food and medicine.  Or, you could set up your own fundraising campaign, or give on that page as well, in order to give aid to 145 more children.  In any case, I just hope that the people displaced by this country's turmoil will remain on your hearts and minds.  I'll leave you with one of my favorite verses:

12 He will rescue the poor when they cry to him;
    he will help the oppressed, who have no one to defend them.
13 He feels pity for the weak and the needy,
    and he will rescue them.
14 He will redeem them from oppression and violence,
    for their lives are precious to him. (Psalm 72:12-14)

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