It's the amount of money given by people just like you for our church's Advent Conspiracy.
There are so many needs in the world. Can a hundred grand really make a difference?
What will this $133,556 actually do?
- It will actually dig wells for people who have no clean water to drink (there are 900 million people like this in the world today).
- It will actually rescue slaves from brothels in Asia and bring perpetrators of violent crime to justice in Africa. It will provide care for families who have been forced to make bricks without pay, and teach them how to start their own businesses.
- It will actually show the love of God for those who are just barely hanging on to hope.
Last week I wrote about the value of grief. I said, "Grief puts us in touch with what really matters, and with the state of our own soul." Shortly after writing those words, I read these:
"When Paul said not 'to grieve like . . . [those] who have no hope' (1 Thessalonians 4:13), he was reassuring us that the sorrow we experience in this world is mingled with the solid hope that sorrow won't have the last word."
Carolyn Custis James is the writer behind this, and she goes on to add this suprising statement, "I think . . . perhaps the difference between how we and the world sorrow is that we sorrow more, not less, and in our sorrowing we are entering in some mysterious way into God's sorrow. We grieve individual loses, estrangements, prodigals, broken-down lives, the shattered dream; he grieves a world of losses, a world of shattered dreams. We suffer the blinding ache of a parent over a prodigal child; he feels the same ache for a prodigal planet. His is the distress of a master craftsman over a masterpiece destroyed — for the way things are is not the way he meant for them to be. As we grow in our likeness to Jesus, we will be gripped by the same sorrow over what is wrong in this world and over our part in it, and we too will weep" (Half the Church: Recapturing God's Global Vision for Women, 142–43, emphasis mine).
$113,556 is not the answer to all the world's problems, but it begins to address some of them. Best of all, it indicates that the church is waking up, is grieved by injustice, and is finding ways to be part of the solution.
Now that's good news.