Wednesday, April 16, 2008

A need for dialogue...

"Lord, I have a heavy burden of all I've seen and know
It's more than I can handle
But your word is burning like a fire shut up in my bones
and I can’t let it go" (When the Saints, by Sara Groves)

Have you ever read or heard something that causes such a reaction within you that you have to fight to think about other things? That's how I feel today.

As I read Bryan's comment about obesity in low income neighborhoods on the What to Eat blog, it stirred me up again and I just can't let it go.

I am all for personal responsibility. That is really where it ends. It doesn't matter if you give the person all the food they need to eat well, they still need to be the ones to eat it. But I feel that sometimes people oversimplify it because they are basing their opinions on false assumptions. People, including myself, draw their opinions from their personal experiences. Everyone has a story to tell. Our experiences are important, it is a part of real life. Yet, I have not been at a grocery store in the poorest parts of the city. So I can't make the assumption that they have a decent produce section in their store. Actually, I can't even make the assumption that there is even a decent grocery store to begin with. Most people wouldn't even want to drive through certain parts of the city, so how can I tell someone who lives there that if they want to lose weight on a limited income, they should go for walks?

Discussing opinions is good, but it's not enough. I for one am yearning for some more dialogue. I am new around here, so I don't know how this is being addressed in my city. I also know that when I feel very strongly about something, I feel the urge to speak (or write in this case). But I am painfully aware that I don't see the big picture and that I too am missing something.

I really need a way to work all these thoughts out because it is getting in the way of me taking care of my home and family.

I included the opening lyrics from Sara Grove's song, "When the Saints" because it really reflects how I feel right now. Sara Groves has spoken out about social justice over the past couple of years, and her latest albums is a reflection of the things she is learning along the way. This song is very encouraging to me, because it seems like we can do so little, but God hasn't called us to coward down. As she states on her website: "I can't just fight when I think I can win."

So what is coming next? I don't know. But I don't want to just think about it any longer. At least not by myself.

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