Monday, July 24, 2006

$38.16

That's what the soccer mom in front of me payed for a video game for the 11ish-year-old kid at her side. She slid her credit card through the slot, signed the pad, and went on with the rest of her life.

I have nothing against soccer moms (who drive SUV's and have 2.5 kids). But I do have something against a culture that is so consumer oriented that it takes more than a day's pay (@ minimum wage) to buy a game that will be played for the next two weeks, until a new one comes out.

Now, I don't know the people in front of me, and this description may not apply to them, but it applied to me a few years ago. As Christians, where are our resources devoted?

At Compassion International (see add on my sidebar), it costs $32.00/mo. to pay for the education and training of a child in a third-world country. Yes, this is cheaper than a new video game.

But see, Christians in America been taught to believe that what we work for is our own, and the money we make is ours to do with what we please. But there is a problem with this. Since we are not our own, the fruits of our labor are not either.

What if every member of the Church in America stopped buying video games, television sets, movie tickets, DVD's, and (yes, I'll say it) CD's for a month? Not as a boycott, but to dedicate those monies to the AIDS epidemic in Africa. Imagine how the world would change.

Just think about it.

6 comments:

Sanely_InSaNe said...

Ack, scary. Indeed I scared myself. (Don't be alarmed, it happens a lot.)
The instant I read what you wrote, I got all defensive. Like, "Yeah that money is my own and I can do what I want with it!"
Don't get me wrong, I still think that, it's just I pondered the power of charity. What if indeed everyone pitched in money to help the world? It's a good point, but then again, it's MY money. My parents indeed worked for it, and it is ours. Ah, but if we were willing to donate and the like and EVERYONE else even just in America did as well...Wow...A lot could definitely be achieved.
My parents already give some money to charity funds and stuff, but I definitely see where you're comin' from Cruz.

tunz4jesus said...

Being the legalistic person I am I hurridly began to figure out what we give over our tithe to see if I fell in this group. I drive a GMC Mini van, have two kids, my youngest has a game boy. What is the magic number we need to give over our tithe to be a good follower of Christ. I became even more sad when I realized the widow gave it all. I haven't even asked what He would have me do.
Blessings my brother, thanks for stirring the pot.

Attempting To Follow The Way said...

sweet post cruzie...i definitely hang on to not only money but so many things of this world that I think are mine.

Chris said...

I have to admit, my wife and I have been struggling with this for a year or so now, especially since we became missionaries. We're supported by people at home, and so it sort of begs the question, should we be "donating" the money that they donated to us? Or how about, since we're both musicians and my wife is a photographer, is it selfish to buy instruments and cameras and whatnot when doing so means we can't give more money to the third-world?

I've gone over this in my mind a thousand times ... the cost of the new camera we've deided to buy ($900) would feed and clothe and educate so many people. But on the other hand, what could the camera be used for that has no monetary value?

I think the conclusion I'm starting to reach is that our money, while not our own, is still just another resource. Instead of following some sort of rule about it (which is usually dictated by the world), we follow God's leading. If God says "you're going to use this camera for my good", then who are we to say "but I could feed a hundred people for a year with that money"?

The only thing then, is that God seems to love our desires as much as everybody else's. When my wife tells me that the only thing in the world she wants to do is take pictures, who am I to argue with a desire so obviously placed in her by God? Or who am I to argue against the desires placed in me to play the best music I can, which might require a guitar that costs enough to educate 80 people in Bangkok?

I guess I'm in the process of trying to isolate my mind from the world's many voices and make decisions based on God alone; not on guilt, not on greed, and not on rules. Just on love.

Chris said...

Another thought: perhaps we in the US should be thinking about what it would take to ship all that food we destroy every year (overproduction from farms) over to Africa or the Middle East or Indonesia where they don't have much food. Seems such a waste that our photography and music (like yours, Cruz) could be able to reveal.

Princess_Gurl said...

Hey Cruz! this is Sarah!! check out my blog at sarahcurry.blogspot.com!!