So Much To Be Thankful For

BY 30 HOUR FAMINE TEAM

Mark Oestreicher, The Youth Cartel

marko-be-thankfulOf course, it’s that week when we focus on being thankful. Maybe it seems a little weird—even discordant—to think about hungry children and being thankful in the same space. But we have much to be deeply thankful about. Not only is there no reason to separate our thankfulness from our awareness of the fact that millions will go without food today, it’s actually counter-productive!

I am so thankful to get to play a role in 30 Hour Famine. I’m thankful for the amazing team in the World Vision office who love youth workers and love teenagers and love making a difference in the mouths and stomachs of hungry children by serving you all. I’m thankful for a God who sees and knows every hungry child. I’m thankful for a God who is not distant and removed, but present, bringing healing and restoration. And I’m thankful that our perfect God lovingly chooses, most often, to bring healing and restoration through us. What an honor, what a privilege that we get to partner with God!

I asked a few of our regular 30 Hour Famine bloggers to share what they’re thankful for when they think of Famine. Here’s what they had to share:

Brooklyn Lindsey

Middle School Pastor, Highland Park Nazarene Church, Lakeland, FL

brooklyn-lindsey

When I was a kid my mom worked tirelessly to keep food on the table and shoes on eight growing feet. I never really grasped the gravity of her sacrifices until much later in life. My mom wore “mom jeans” not because she was out of the fashion loop, but because she wanted us to have jeans that fit our growing bodies. I’m thankful for people who humbly provide, day after day, week after week, month after month, year after year, decade upon decade to make sure those who cannot care for themselves yet, get exactly what they need. The summer I traveled to Africa to see how the 30 Hour Famine works was the summer when I saw the gravity of sacrifices that teenagers make. They may seem small; they may seem insignificant in light of the world’s problems. But their sacrifices are providing for others—day after day–in an ongoing, momentous provision. I’m thankful for the hearts of teenagers. Who rightfully believe, that there is a power in them that is able to do more than we could ever ask or imagine.

Ross Carper

Middle School Director, First Presbyterian Church, Spokane, WA

ross-carper

I’m thankful that 30 Hour Famine allows us to educate students on sustainable, empowerment-oriented development work, and how that fits into our faith. The Malawian mother pictured here doesn’t feed her child because World Vision drops off food rations; instead, she runs a small business that grows and sells tasty mushrooms through an ongoing community program that our Famine funds support. As I sit around the table this weekend with my family, I’ll remember meeting her and be thankful that she is able to continue sharing healthy meals with her family because of the profits she makes from her business.

Emily Capes

Youth Director, First UMC, Lebanon, TN

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I’m incredibly thankful to have spent the weekend with 30 Hour Famine staff/booth at National Youth Workers Convention. I loved having youth leader after youth leader come by the booth to let us know that the 30 Hour Famine is the best program they do with their youth every year. I completely agree! Not only is it a fun weekend but it is life changing – for our youth & for children all around the world!