July 09, 2008

Little or True Pleasures?

Toilet paper, toilets, garbage collection, street sweepers, sidewalks, asphalt, hamburgers, vegetables, napkins, clean water, deodorant, hot water, running water, stoplights, etc.

Oh the little pleasures of life in a first world country.

I need a yearly dose of a third world country to remind me of how rich I really am and what rich is and is not. Having just returned from a trip to a remote part of Ethiopia, I am enjoying all the small things in a big way. I am so thankful for the fact that I live in SoCal America. Yet I always end up asking the question, Why me instead of Tesfye, Ashenafi, Getachew, Teshoma? They are great people who live on so little.

At the same time I am taught once again, what has real value. Is my real value in my Costco card, my 24 Hour fitness card, my Disneyland pass, my Starbucks card? My friends in Ethiopia are rich without having even toilet paper. The love of friends, the vibrant relationship with Christ, the tightness of their family, the joy they get from each new day, the purpose they find in simply helping someone who is in trouble or in sharing the simple story of salvation…these are their true pleasures that so many Americans are missing while we enjoy our little pleasures.

God help me fully live who I am and where I am, without missing the true pleasures because of the little pleasures that become much bigger in my mind than they really are.

No comments: