Financial markets across the world are plummeting. China has been driving economic growth way beyond its own borders for many years, but with the Chinese economy faltering and falling, investors all over the world are getting nervous and billions upon billions of dollars have been lost. Investors are understandably nervous which is likely to trigger further losses on world money markets. To say that things look grim is a massive understatement.
I’m not qualified to make too many comments on matters financial but can I ask you, can I plead with you, please don’t panic?
One of the biggest reasons I’m asking you not to panic is because I remember the Global Financial Crisis in 2008. That crisis brought on the Global Food Crisis. Higher prices around the world put even the basics of life, such as food, out of the reach of those who had the least to lose.
In 2008 I visited Haiti with Compassion Australia and I saw the result of the financial and food crises. I saw rioting in the streets of Port au Prince. People were desperate to find a way to put any kind of food on the table for their families … but there was no food. People were feeding their families dirt.
I understand that at such times we tend to tighten our belts and discard excess spending. Again, can I plead with you not to panic and make hasty decisions. Don’t consider that giving to those in need is excess spending. Those with the least are already at breaking point. If you are already giving to alleviate poverty you are probably the only way they’re staying alive. Please don’t think of giving to aid agencies as an extra. It’s not an extra. It’s life or death.
I’ve seen many times that the first thing that disappears in uncertain financial times is giving … and I get that. We all want to ensure the security of those we love and sometimes we do need to make tough decisions. All I ask is that when considering how you tighten your belt, you put everything on the table and make wise decisions. Don’t let your giving be the first thing that you automatically cut.
Sometimes there are no changes at all in our circumstances but the nervousness around us causes us to close our heart and our wallet to opportunities. That’s fear.
Don’t let fear direct your actions. If you’re a Christian you know that perfect love casts out fear. The choice is yours to live in love or fear. I pray that you live in love.
Please don’t panic. Please don’t let the poorest of the poor suffer even more.
This afternoon I’m heading to Indonesia to visit churches there which are partnering with Compassion. I want to be able to assure those I meet who are living in poverty that the world knows their need and that they will not be forgotten. If you’d like to live out of love instead of fear, please consider sponsoring a child today through Compassion.
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