Wednesday, November 19, 2008


I was recently asked by a guy who works with Mocha Club to ponder the idea: "I need Africa more than Africa needs me." First off, what's Mocha Club? Simple. Mocha Club [] is a community-based website where members can start a team and invite friends to join them in giving $7 a month – the cost of 2 mochas – to support a project in Africa. Mocha Club's vision is to provide a way for people who don't have hundreds or thousands of dollars to make a difference in Africa. Partnering with this organization was a no brainer. Ok so the second part, responding to his thought...
Last year walking through South Coast Plaza Mall (Orange County's sacred place of worship), as I walked through the aisles--Chloe, BCBG, Gucci, Jimmy Choo-- a question on my heart began to form, "How would this place be different if I walked through with the lovely children of Africa?" Those precious children, with their tender poverty of spirit and wide-eyed wonder. How would it disrupt? Change things? Change me? It was a quiet moment in my heart, one I never thought I'd be pondering in this blog.
Africa is a part of my life. I've never been there and yet Africa has been there for me: There's the little gal, Eva, I sponsor in Uganda who teaches me about enjoying the simple things and trusting God for daily bread. There's my Kenyan friend Pamela who shared with me what it was like to be part of a tribe, a people of history and I wondered have I ever REALLY experienced true community? There's my friend Aimee who grew up in Congo and shared the horrific stories of the women wounded by rebels yet their triumphant spirit and I wondered what does it mean for me to let Jesus restore my femininity when it feels like the evil one has nearly destroyed it? There's Melissa who left all she knew and cared for orphans in Tanzania and taught me it just takes an open and willing heart to be used by God to literally help change a little person's life.
I need Africa! Maybe cuz despite the poverty, despite the struggle, despite the injustice I see men and women glowing, communities staying in-tact, God alive and moving and providing in spite of seeming impossible circumstances. And in some way that disrupts my safe little world in "America: Home of the entitled and cowardly" And I am one. I need Africa. Africa draws my heart back to Jesus' words in his Sermon on the Mount..."Blessed are the poor in spirit, for they WILL SEE GOD."
What do you think? Leave a comment or write a response on your own blog.
OH, and be sure to come back by my blog December 1st to continue the conversation!


Anonymous said...

We need to remember Africa because Africa and the poor, and poor in spirit, need us.

The Turners said...

Well said SuzShaw! What a great reminder, especially at this time of year when everyone is making wish-lists for new gadgets, etc.!
I needed this reminder!

Anonymous said...

"God bless us all, everyone." Tiny Tim

Anonymous said...

I'd no idea you were so concerned about Africa until I read your blog on my new computer. It certainly is a continent with many serious needs. Although I have noticed the footnotes on your emails.