Monday, April 10, 2017

LIVING ON ONE DOLLAR A DAY by (renee byer!)

i am so inspired, so moved..    by her photography; her heart; her eyes..    and if her traveling photography exhibit had a theme song; a soundtrack, of course i think it should be matthew west's, do something, song    -which ive mentioned before should be our national anthem.


it has been part of my spiritual practice:  when i come across photographs of people living in poverty around the world, or when i come across, more directly, homeless people in my own day to day local travels

when i remember and assess my own life; the financial ups & downs as relative to my inner life ups & downs     .. i know from direct experience also, more$ does not = greater peace/happiness.

i look often at what money, comfort, wealth can and cannot do.

so, if you want to..   look for a while at renee byers extraordinary photography exhibit, and then say to yourself..

         ...if only we could get them each a home
         ... if only we could get them all food
           ..  if only we could supply them, clothing, medical care, an education
..clean drinking water...
and continue down the list

and then go visit,   -say, a community like..  Pleasanton.   And see that a percentage of the children, families there do, in fact,   ~have it all.

homes, food, clothing, schools,  air conditioning, malls, multiple cars, jobs, steady income, doctors, dentists, vacation opportunities, 24 grocery stores where the shelves are never empty, and sports parks, and restaurants galore   -and i-phone 7's

people living with some of the greatest communication tools in history in the palm of their hand

and yet.. 

if you lifted the rooftop and looked inside..     we don't have the same % of happy, whole, contributing individuals/families.

there is a lot of neuroses, brokenness, loneliness, insecurity, anxiety    -divorces, judgement, control/manipulations, arguments, law suits, anger/upset over this or that..  emptiness, selfishness, cant-get-or-have-enough-ness, toxic relationships/competition, addictions, fallings~out

-hurting people in one form or another.

i cant tell you how many times ive been reminded..      but i certainly have learned a few lessons about what money can,

and cannot do.

we all need more than things; and more things..

we all need the fruits of the spirit     -no matter what income level; no matter where in the world; no matter what level of education; no matter what gender; no matter what sexual orientation; no matter what political affiliation; no matter what!

we all need love.
we all need peace.
we all need joy.
we all need patience.
we all need kindness.
we all need goodness.
we all need gentleness.
we all need faithfulness.
we all need self-control.

we all need someone to care for; and someone who cares about us...    we all need to give & receive forgiveness, mercy, grace, hope, faith

and these things are not commodities; they don't sit on a shelf; they cannot be purchased online and shipped over-night

nor do they have expiration dates; nor do they have limited supplies

you cannot provide blood or urine samples to show evidence of them..

they are infinite in scope; an eternal gift to humanity

     God's signature.

the way a mortal man might be said to have a "trophy" wife   [look what money bought me!]

God's trophies..    are all the human beings who manifest fruits of the spirit..

and he doesn't use money...

    ...look at what God's love can do!...

in Jesus name, amen



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