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Reflections from the christian Aid Website
by David Hawken

REFLECTIONS gathered by David Hawken from the Christian Aid website
This week is Christian Aid Week.
Instead of a Bible study, let's look at a practical way that we can follow the teaching of Jesus.
Taken directly from the Christian Aid website, this is Jessica's story:
Jessica Mwedzi smiles with love for her children as she stirs a single bowl of porridge for them...
...But she knows they’re hungry for more. This one bowl of porridge is all she and her family can eat today: ‘My children crave a decent meal, but I can’t provide. We often go to bed on an empty stomach. It pains me to send them to bed hungry.’
For Jessica, drought means every day is a struggle for survival.
Like many women in rural Zimbabwe - 7 out of 10 rely on farming for income and food - she toils on her farm, but nothing can grow on her ashen, dry land.
Drought starves. Intensified by the climate crisis, and the effects of war in Ukraine on global food production, it drives families into hunger.
Jessica recalls that ‘One year, we had no rain. The scorching sun burnt my crops just as they were about to bloom. It was so painful and disheartening.’
It’s unjust that drought - exacerbated by the effects of conflict and the global pandemic - robs Jessica of the power to provide for her family. Her husband is unwell, so she's the only breadwinner. Her children look up to her, but she has nothing left to give.
Once before, when things were desperate, Jessica asked her neighbours for food but she came home with nothing.
Jessica is anything but helpless. In the face of drought, her love for her family gives her courage to stand strong - and we stand with Jessica.
As the golden sun fades across the sky, Jessica watches her much-loved sons and daughters sing, dance and play outside. Can you imagine how it feels for her to know her children are hungry, but have nothing left to give?
She finds a ray of hope that she will overcome this tough time - and be able to provide her children with good food, and a full life, free from hunger.
Could you give today, and help this loving mum provide food and hope for her family?
How your gift could help
Jessica could grow drought-resistant crops, set up water taps on her farm, learn how to grow food in the harsh climate.
Her dry, dusty land could transform into a garden of hope, abundant with fresh food like tomatoes, beans and cucumbers.
She'll be proud of the fruits of her work, and she'll see her children enjoy their first full meal in months.
With your gift this Christian Aid Week, families like Jessica's won't go to bed hungry tonight.
Hope does not disappoint. Hope lives in you.
Please …….. go to the Christian Aid website and give what you can to help mothers like Jessica and their husbands and children.
Christian Aid really does work.
We aim to end poverty and injustice worldwide by focusing on seven key areas – see below. This involves working in partnership with local organisations, as well as with governments and the private sector.
Our work includes helping people to:
• claim their rights and access services such as healthcare and education
• ensure they are not discriminated against for any reason
• become more resilient to shocks and disasters such as drought, climate change and hurricanes
• make the most of opportunities, such as being able to sell their produce for a fair price.
• Everything we do is rooted in our Christian beliefs. Jesus said that everyone is made in God’s image and proclaimed the good news to the poor and freedom to the oppressed. Through his life, teaching, death and resurrection, Jesus called his followers to love God, love their neighbours and to seek justice for those who are oppressed.
• The world we experience is broken by suffering, injustice and sinfulness. Relationships between people, communities, corporations and nations are distorted by inequalities of power. As a result, we are confronted by the scandal of poverty and the degradation of creation.
• However, our hope is founded on God’s promise of a world without poverty where everyone has life in all its fulness. We, therefore, believe the world can be restored and transformed, and that God calls us to speak and act prophetically to bring change.
• The issues we work on are complex. But we are sustained by the confidence that God is with us, revealing to us good ways of living together. We are therefore committed to working and praying for God’s will to ‘be done on earth as it is in heaven’.
Our belief that poverty can be ended is based on our understanding of scripture and the work of a creative, loving God.

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