There will be a day with no more tears, no more pain, no more fear…

I am one of those people that judiciously avoid negative,tragedy-filled media. It darkens my lenses, makes the entire world look completely black, bleak and blue. I know avoidance is not very journalistic of me but since 90 percent of the broadcasts I imbibe are on-line, it’s actually possible. I just select what to read, watch or listen to.

You see, I have been consciously avoiding pictorials of the hunger and famine in East Africa. Never once clicking on the ‘read more’ option. Always intuitively averting my gaze. You know the images i am talking about. Babies that look like grannies. Lifeless. Dark. Patchy. All Skin and bones. Barely living. And their eyes. Destitute. Abandoned. Dissipated. Crying out for help.

I cannot look into their eyes. Just like i cannot look into the faces of the women and children i walk/jog by several times a week. All day and night, they sit by the side of the road, usually near the mosque, hoping for alms, waiting for someone to remember them.

The stark contrast of my overweight body and their emaciated ones is not lost on me. Ironic. My greed, their lack.

There is so much ugliness in this world and i am a part of it. I ask myself, what can I actually do? Will the piece of bread that i forfeit multiply and feed the 2.8 million facing hunger in my corner of the world? The problem is too big, or am I too small?

I cannot consider the ugliness without growing despondent. And its not just the famine, its the deep-seated pain, anger, frustration that leads young Londoners to rioting and looting. And then today a UN survey declares that a third of Tanzanian girls experience sexual violence before they are 18 years old. Oh God, i cry out. Tears fill my eyes. How am i to face the realities of my world, to take it on with all of its ugliness?

I find truth in Steven Curtis Chapman’s song written long before this past weekend’s London riots.

I walk the streets of London
And notice in the faces passing by
Something that makes me stop and listen
My heart grows heavy with the cry

Where is the hope for London?
You whisper and my heart begins to soar
As I’m reminded
That every street in London in Yours
Oh, yes it is

I walk the dirt roads of Uganda
I see the scars that war has left behind
Hope like the sun is fading
They’re waiting for a cure no one can find

And I hear children’s voices singing
Of a God who heals and rescues and restores
And I’m reminded
That every child in Africa is Yours

And its all Yours, God, Yours, God
Everything is Yours
From the stars in the sky
To the depths of the ocean floor
And its all Yours, God, Yours, God
Everything is Yours
You’re the Maker and Keeper, Father and Ruler of everything
It’s all Yours

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