I have been studying the waste management system with my English classes. When I asked the kids what they wanted to DO in the unit of learning they replied they wanted to go to the landfill and see the masses of rubbish that they learnt were thrown out in their city. (1,600 tons a day)

The landfill was closed down over 10 years ago but there are still people collecting, sorting and re-selling garbage in the area. We drove around the remains of the landfill (42 hectares) and parked at a block of land where people were sorting through garbage.

Some of my students were nearly physically ill when they arrived. We walked around in the piles of garbage and talked to the people who live and work there every day. There were young children, teenage kids and their parents, generations reduced to collecting and sorting rubbish for a living. Unable to break out of the cycle of poverty as they only earn about $1-2 a day.

My students wrote reflections about the experience and I was very glad to see that they got what I was hoping to they would get out of the experience, a sense of empathy and responsibility. A few days later God gave me a sermon to share with them and here is an abbreviated version for you.

Mark 10:23And Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, “How difficult it will be for those who have wealth to enter the kingdom of God!” 24And the disciples were amazed at his words. But Jesus said to them again, “Children, how difficult it is to enter the kingdom of God! 25It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the kingdom of God.” 26And they were exceedingly astonished, and said to him, “Then who can be saved?” 27Jesus looked at them and said, With man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God.”

The Rich Man and Lazarus (Luke 16:19-31)

19 “There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and lived in luxury every day. 20 At his gate was laid a beggar named Lazarus, covered with sores 21 and longing to eat what fell from the rich man’s table. Even the dogs came and licked his sores. 22 “The time came when the beggar died and the angels carried him to Abraham’s side. The rich man also died and was buried.

23 In hell, where he was in torment, he looked up and saw Abraham far away, with Lazarus by his side. 24 So he called to him, ‘Father Abraham, have pity on me and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am in agony in this fire.’ 25 “But Abraham replied, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, while Lazarus received bad things, but now he is comforted here and you are in agony. 26 And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been fixed, so that those who want to go from here to you cannot, nor can anyone cross over from there to us.’ 27 “He answered, ‘Then I beg you, father, send Lazarus to my father’s house, 28 for I have five brothers. Let him warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.’ 29 “Abraham replied, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them listen to them.’ 30 “‘No, father Abraham,’ he said, ‘but if someone from the dead goes to them, they will repent.’ 31 “He said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.’ “

Are you and I like that rich person ?

The bible tells us that if we have 2 coats we should share one with those who have none. No matter how little you have there is always someone worse off you can give to.

The Widow and the Mites

Mark 12:41-44 41 And he sat down over against the treasury, and beheld how the multitude cast money into the treasury: and many that were rich cast in much. 42 And there came a poor widow, and she cast in two mites, which make a farthing. 43 And he called unto him his disciples, and said unto them, Verily I say unto you, This poor widow cast in more than all they that are casting into the treasury: 44 for they all did cast in of their superfluity; but she of her want did cast in all that she had, even all her living.

Give, love and take responsibility for those less fortunate than you. Remember the parable of the talents in Matthew 25:14-30. You are expected to DO something with what you have and those who have more are expected to DO more.

Be a light…God Bless You

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