Last night I went to a crowd-sourced showing of the new documentary, Poverty Inc. Over the last month I’ve been partnering with a local representative from Trades of Hope to help bring the movie to Chattanooga. Despite a messy, rainy night, close to 60 people came out to watch the film. I was thrilled!
“No one wants to be a beggar for life.”
“What we need is to no longer be excluded.”
I’ve actually had the opportunity to see this documentary a handful of times now. These are the two quotes which seem to resonate the deepest with me. In fact, I woke up multiple times last night and, similar to how a certain song will often play on repeat in my heart throughout night, these were the lyrics playing over and over.
That’s the question I took some time to think about this morning. Here are some answers that came to mind.
No one wants to be a beggar for life.
A beggar’s life is a hopeless life and situations that appear hopeless will always break my heart. Yet, on the heels of that heartbreak, I find myself, time and again, being filled with hope because the Giver of Hope is a fountain that never runs dry. I recently blogged about how “no way out stories” seem to stir this mixture of emotions inside of me…sorrow and joy.
This morning I found myself reading Psalm 22. In this Psalm (like so many of the Psalms David penned) I can see that same progression from suffering to praise.
David begins the Psalm “My God, my God why have you forsaken.” (vs 1)
Yet, by the end of the Psalm he is praising again.
“I will declare your name to my people;
in the assembly I will praise you.” (vs 22)
“They will proclaim his righteousness,
declaring to a people yet unborn:
He has done it!” (vs 31)
I am not sure there is anything more beautiful to me than seeing light breaking forth out of the darkness like this. There is hope. There is a way out.
What we need is to no longer be excluded.
As I thought more about those words this morning, I read the story of Cornelius and Peter (Acts 10) and the visions they both had prior to meeting each other. In Peter’s vision the Lord teaches him how the Good News of Jesus Christ was for the Gentiles too. “I now realize how true it is that God does not show favoritism but accepts men from every nation who fear him and do what is right.” (vs 34)
Because of the work Jesus did on the cross, salvation became accessible to all. No one needs to be excluded. Christ is our model. Not only is He the pathway to everlasting life but His sacrifice demonstrates that, as His followers, we are to include others too. No one is to be excluded.
There is plenty more I could say on this subject but I will close this post with a song. It was one that was sung at church last weekend and when I heard it, memories of Christ’s grace and acceptance of me came rushing back. This was the song I walked down the aisle to on my wedding day when I married my husband.
It was the perfect song for this prodigal daughter who decided to run back home.