My company, Clayton Homes, held their annual “Team Member Appreciation Night” at the Knoxville Convention that coincides with their annual “Showcase of Homes.” This used to be held off of Magnolia Ave (the hap, hap, happiest avenue of all), so the convention center is big step up.
Anyway, they treated us to a meal of potato salad, potato chips (gotta get those carbs), baked beans, hot dogs, chicken fingers, and cookies. As I and my family enjoyed too much food, the pain of guilt hit me rather forcefully.
While we were over-indulging, I am sure there were those not too far away who had eaten little to nothing all day long; maybe even all week long.
A few weeks ago, I’m not sure I would have thought about this. However, I’ve just finished reading Shane Claiborne’s book, “The Irrestible Revolution.” Through this book I have begun to see our mission (and how we’re failing in it) in a different light.
He talks about how we are insulated from those who are in deep need and how we deal with helping them by giving money, thus keeping up a wall of separation between “us” and “them.” Instead, he says, we should go personally too them and join them in their despair, helping them as we can. After all, that is what Jesus did.
The book was one of the most challenging I have read and it has caused me to re-evaluate how effective the church is when we just send $ to those who need it instead of going and serving ourselves.