Saturday, April 04, 2009

My first attempt

Well, there are a few things that I think as a human I need to attempt at least once in life, need to go out of our comfort zone and do it ... I don't know when and why I had this in my mind, yet I am very grateful that God ONLY put more sensible things in my mind over the years (more a meaningful activity vs a dare).

This time ... I am attempting Famine 30 (note the tense!). Seriously, it is much a harder decision for me than many other things that I have decided to do before .. because I know I don't have the best stomach. Stomach is one of my weakest point, and I get stomachache easily ... I am not very comfortable (of cuz it is not going out of my comfort zone in the first place, but it is uncomfortable to another level), and thus have been thinking whether I should do it. At last, I decided to give it a try without officially registered for I truly question if I can really handle the 30 hours - haha .. so little faith I have!

For the first 12 hours or so, it does not affect me much physically ... However, during our gathering and sharing time with other brothers and sisters from church who are doing it as well, the notion of choice suddenly hits me! Yes, I am "starving," yet so full of my own will, and I always know that if my physical condition cannot handle it, I could quit anytime for my own sake. Yet there are millions and millions of people (most are children too who are physically weaker than I am) on this earth who are being put to starve unwillingly. Some even don't know what "starvation" is for they never had been full all their lives!! As I was enjoying my meals everyday, do I realize the injustice in this world? Do I remember those who are suffering, or do I simply give thanks for my food - delicious, hot, and good food?

As it is approaching 15 hours, the mid-point mark, I am thinking ... yes, the stats is really true (Stats regarding the fact that we will still be healthy and functioning as usual if we eat only half of what we normally eat.). I am still functioning and functioning well with only water and juice~ We, people in developed countries, are really consuming too much on this earth!! If we all cut our food consumption by half, there would be way fewer famine and people living in hunger in the world.

(updated April 4 - evening)
The second half of the 30 hours was not too bad, partly because a few hours had been spent in sleep, and then surprisingly (and thankfully) my stomach was very calm, it might sound a couple times but I don't feel much hunger nor pain. Instead, I started to feel a bit cold in the morning. As I was putting on more clothes, I think of those in hunger - when they are weak and cold, do they have extra clothing to be put on and keep them warm?

As I continue to ponder why I don't feel much hungry, I believe it is because I constantly drinking water and at times fruit juice (at times I felt headaches, but usually it disappeared after taking some fruit juice) ... How about those in the 3rd world? How many of them have clean drinking water to consume? How many would have juice to supplement the "missing food"?

The hardest time for me is the last hour, not so much in terms of hunger for me .. but energy level ... I felt like sleeping all the time though I am not tired physically. I was not doing any vigorous physical activity which requires lots of energy, I simple was reading a book (trust me, it wasn't that boring) but I found it hard to concentrate and keep shutting my eyes unconsciously very often. At last, I needed to keep myself physically busy to keep awake (really don't wanna let the last hour went by in sleep "unconsciously," would want to really experience it to the best I can). I suppose it is probably the effect of not having enough nutrition / sugar in body? Food not only affects our physical condition, but our condition, for instance, to learn as well. During this financial tsunami, we often talked about retrain workers. For workers in the 3rd world, even though there are resources to retrain them, if their living condition does not get improved, it will take them extra energy and extra effort to be retrained. Do the general public understand that or would they simply think they are not as smart and look down on them? The lack of food in the 3rd world is no small business!

After the experience, I found it quite an irony. ON the one hand, we tried to experience and feel how those in hunger feel, on the other, we can never truly experience it for we have many protective shields to ensure our health and safety (Don't get me wrong, I am not saying they are not important!) which those in the 3rd world do not have the luxury of having.

However, I am truly thankful for the experience! Thank you Lord for giving me the chance and sustaining me to go through the full 30 hours in famine to understand more of how those in hunger feel. Praying that I will not forget any of the above lessons but continue to strive for justice in this world for those are our fellow brothers and sisters being created in the SAME image of God.

If you have a chance to read this entry of my blog and feel the need of helping those in hunger and poverty, you may consider getting an adopted child in a 3rd world country or help support (financially, physically, prayerfully, or in any creative ways) some of those organizations who are working very hard to minimize the number of hungers and poverty in this world. In case you are interested, one of my favorite organization in this area is Compassion - ^.^