How I Keep Forgetting The World Has Needs
It’s laundry. Or it’s the dishes. The toddler is crying. The preschooler needs lunch. Bills need to be paid. Accounts balanced–hopefully. I don’t think I’ve slept consistently through one night in years. If the little one isn’t teething the big one is having nightmares. It feels intense. It is intense. My immediate world has needs that are tugging on the hem of my shirt constantly.
Then you hear of the world’s needs. Refugees flooding out of wartorn countries. Children being sold because parents are too naive or poor. People enslaved to brick making companies who have tricked them into owing them an unpayable amount. Villages believing a witch doctor’s claims that some baby is cursed and set him out to die. Teens in my own town, and pretty much every town, being ensnared into trafficking with pretty promises that turn into vicious lies. These needs are big. Bigger than mine. They feel too big to deal with. Too big for me to make a difference in my little way.
I determine to do something. Then my hem is tugged again from a little hand next to me. I forget.
I am guilty of forgetting the world’s needs. Every day I forget. I feel bad about it. I tell myself I will do better. I will do something.
I am imperfect though. I don’t know what to do. I doubt myself and my abilities. Not knowing what is right to do, I do nothing. As Francis Chan said, “I didn’t know what color shirt you liked so I didn’t know which one to get you.”
I am ridiculous.
So here’s what I’m doing today:
- I found some organizations that are reputable, fit with my beliefs, and my passions (IJM and Traffick 911 are two), and I supported them monetarily. Tips on money: I may feel broke, but let’s admit that if I have money to buy myself something just for fun every once in awhile, then I have some money to donate. Also, make sure you check the organization’s financial reputation.
- I prayed for each organization for five minutes. Small steps for me.
- I went through my closet and took out clothes I don’t wear and donated them to a local thrift store that uses their funds to support moms (Twice as Nice).
Things I will do to sustain my remembering:
- Go through my stuff in my house one room each month and donate on the third week of the month. Note: If it’s not on the calendar, it probably won’t happen.
- Buy extra goods once a month when grocery shopping to donate at a pantry on the first week of the month.
- Pray each day for 5 minutes for someone other than me while driving in the car.
It feels overwhelming when I see the big picture but less so with small actionable steps I can do and reevaluate each month. It’s better than staring at the mountain of pain around me and doing nothing from fear and forgetfulness.
What do you do to remember and do something about the needs of the world? I’d love more ideas.